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Rachit Thukral

Argentina WSBK: Razgatlioglu outduels Bautista in Superpole race

Razgatlioglu initially led the 10-lap sprint from pole position on the Yamaha, but slipped to second behind Jonathan Rea on the third tour when the Ulsterman sent his Kawasaki up the inside into Turn 7.

However, a first WSBK win for Rea since Estoril in May wasn’t to be as he made a mistake on lap 6 and dropped to third, making Razgatlioglu and Bautista the primary contenders for the victory again.

It turned out to be a titanic battle between the two as they traded multiple positions multiple times, each eager to get the upper hand on the other.

Ultimately, it was Razgatlioglu who prevailed in the battle with a race-winning move on the penultimate lap, with Bautista’s best efforts in the final 4.2km of the race not enough to prevent the Yamaha rider from claiming an emphatic win at Circuito San Juan Villicum.

The final margin between the two was only 0.6s in Razgatlioglu’s favour and the victory also puts the Turkish rider on pole position for Sunday’s final race of the weekend.

Razgatlioglu now sits 77 points behind Bautista in the standings, although he already admitted in the aftermath of his Saturday crash that his championship hopes are “finished”.

Third place in the race went to Rea, who set the fastest lap late in the 10-lap sprint but ultimately couldn’t regain sufficient ground to make up for his earlier error.

Michael Ruben Rinaldi was best-of-the-rest on the factory Ducati in fifth, some five seconds off the lead, while Alex Lowes finished now too far behind in fifth on the Kawasaki.

Iker Lecuona was sixth on the best of the Hondas, just 0.3s behind Lowes, while Motocorsa Ducati’s Axel Bassani was the top independent rider in seventh.

Lecuona’s teammate Xavi Vierge led a pack of bikes in eighth including Bonovo BMW’s Loris Baz and Yamaha’s Andrea Locatelli, the last-named just missing out on a points finish in 10th.

Scott Redding endured a lacklustre outing en route to 14th, three places behind his factory BMW teammate Michael van der Mark.

Argentina WSBK - Superpole results:

 Cla   Nº   Rider   Bike  Gap
1 Toprak Razgatlıoğlu Yamaha  
2 19  Álvaro Bautista Ducati 0.613
3 65  Jonathan Rea Kawasaki 0.856
4 21  Michael Ruben Rinaldi Ducati 4.357
5 22  Alex Lowes Kawasaki 5.062
6 Iker Lecuona Honda 5.418
7 47  Axel Bassani Ducati 8.714
8 97  Xavi Vierge Honda 10.676
9 76  Loris Baz BMW 10.752
10 55  Andrea Locatelli Yamaha 10.907
11 60  Michael van der Mark BMW 12.459
12 12  Xavi Fores Ducati 14.827
13 31  Garrett Gerloff Yamaha 15.417
14 45  Scott Redding BMW 17.709
15 Philipp Öttl Ducati 19.308
16 Kohta Nozane Yamaha 20.627
17 36  Leandro Mercado Honda 22.760
18 44  Lucas Mahias Kawasaki 22.958
19 50  Eugene Laverty BMW 25.234
20 52  Oliver König Kawasaki 26.232
21 27  Maximilian Scheib Honda 27.217
22 39  Marco Solorza Kawasaki 46.065
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