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Jonathan Rea is positive for a big second half to the season



Holding on: Jonathan Rea leads Toprak Razgatlioglu

Holding on: Jonathan Rea leads Toprak Razgatlioglu

It was a frustrating day for Jonathan Rea

It was a frustrating day for Jonathan Rea


Holding on: Jonathan Rea leads Toprak Razgatlioglu

Jonathan Rea hoped to be going into the summer break off the back of some stronger results at Most in the Czech Republic, where he finished on the podium twice yesterday.

The six-time World Superbike champion conceded more ground in the title race to Ducati’s Alvaro Bautista, who holds an advantage of 31 points at the top at the midway point of the championship.

Reigning champion Toprak Razgatlioglu won both races yesterday to close the deficit further, and the Pata Yamaha rider is now only seven points down on Rea in third position.

Razgatlioglu triumphed in the Superpole sprint race by 2.3s from Rea, with Bautista taking third, and went on to seal a double by 0.7s in race two from Bautista and Northern Ireland’s Rea.

“Last year, I was on the limit with the bike here, I crashed, and in race two I was nowhere,” Rea said.

“But we were right there all weekend, less than three seconds from race wins, but I just didn’t have enough.

“It’s only half-way through the season and when I looked at the championship points, I’ve a good idea of the points that might win the championship and we’re sort of half-way there, so it’s about consistency, no mistakes and try and make the races count when we can,” he added.

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“It’s the summer break now, so not the best result to go into the long summer break, but we’re coming back to some really good tracks for us: Magny-Cours, Portimao and Barcelona, so I’m looking forward to that.

“Every rider has to start with some positives before we get there [Magny-Cours] and it’s a happy hunting ground for us.”

Spaniard Bautista won Saturday’s first race from Razgatlioglu, while Rea could only manage fourth behind BMW’s Scott Redding.

Eugene Laverty sat out the final race of the weekend due to an issue with his forearm. The Co Antrim rider was 19th in Saturday’s race on the Bonovo Action BMW and 18th in the Superpole race.

Laverty announced on Saturday that he will retire from racing at the end of this season, with the 36-year-old taking on a co-ownership role with the satellite Bonovo BMW squad in 2023.

The seventh round of the World Superbike Championship will be held at Magny-Cours in France from September 9-11.

Meanwhile, England’s Davey Todd dominated the Armoy Road Races on Saturday on his Milenco by Padgett’s Honda machines.

The 26-year-old won the showpiece ‘Race of Legends’ finale for the first time, setting a new absolute lap record of 108.534mph.

Todd was 8.8s clear of Michael Sweeney, with Derek Sheils completing the top three.

“There’s no pressure on me from the team to get results, so I can just go out there, have fun and enjoy my racing,” Todd said.

“I’ve got no excuses because the Milenco by Padgett’s Honda Superbike is just an awesome bike, and it seems to get even better every time I ride it.

“The organisers do an absolutely fantastic job at Armoy and that’s reflected in the entry this year.

“I’ve always loved racing here ever since I first came in 2017, so it was one that I wanted to come back to this year with the Padgett’s boys and after the Southern 100, I managed to convince Clive [Padgett, team owner] to come and do it.”

Todd won the Open Superbike race by 3.6s from Sheils, with Sweeney third. He also did the double in the Supersport class, beating Ballymoney’s Darryl Tweed and Adam McLean respectively.

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