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Rachit Thukral

Assen WSBK: Bautista wins final race as Rea, Razgatlioglu collide

Razgatlioglu led the early stages of the race after getting the holeshot from second on the grid. But he soon came under pressure from polesitter Rea, who had successfully recovered from a poor start that had left him fifth at the end of lap 1.

Having gotten a great exit out of the final corner on lap 5, Rea closed in rapidly on Razgatlioglu, who subsequently went wide at Turn 1 and opened the door for the Kawasaki rider.

However, the overtaking attempt ended in disaster as they both crashed out after making contact at the exit of the corner, in what was the most controversial incident between the pair in WSBK’s history.

This promoted Iker Lecuona into the surprise lead, but Bautista was able to repass the Honda rider with ease within a single lap and romp to a third victory of the 2022 season.

The result also leaves Bautista 18 points clear of Rea at the top of the standings, with reigning champion Razgatlioglu - yet to score a win this year - already dropping 45 points off the lead.

Second place in the race went to Razgatlioglu’s factory Yamaha teammate Andrea Locatelli, who demoted Lecuona four laps from the finish to secure his best result of the season.

Lecuona, however, had enough reasons to be content with his finishing position as he clinched the first podium of his rookie WSBK season - as well as the first for Honda since Bautista’s pair of third-place finishes with the Japanese manufacturer in the latter half of the 2021 campaign.

Behind, Alex Lowes rebounded strongly from a double retirement to clinch a solid fourth place in the sole remaining Kawasaki, finishing less than two seconds off the podium.

Motocross Ducati’s Axel Bassani earned the honour of the top independent rider in fifth in a race that saw both Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha) and Loris Baz (Bonovo BMW) retire early on with unrelated crashes.

Meanwhile, Scott Redding delivered his best performance as a BMW rider as he charged from the outside of the top 10 to finish sixth, just two tenths behind Bassani after running as high as fourth in the race.

He was followed by the second factory Ducati of Michael Ruben Rinaldi and teammate Michael van der Mark, the latter still not fully fit from the pre-season injury that forced him to miss the Aragon round a fortnight ago.

The top 10 was completed by Honda rider Xavi Vierge and Lucas Mahias on the Puccetti Kawasaki, as Leon Haslam rounded off his comeback weekend with a 13th place finish aboard the Pedercini Kawasaki.

Assen WSBK - Race 2 results:

Cla # Rider Bike Gap
1 19 Spain Alvaro Bautista Ducati  
2 55 Italy Andrea Locatelli Yamaha 8.770
3 7 Spain Iker Lecuona Honda 11.580
4 22 United Kingdom Alex Lowes Kawasaki 13.329
5 47 Italy Axel Bassani Ducati 14.490
6 45 United Kingdom Scott Redding BMW 14.672
7 21 Italy Michael Ruben Rinaldi Ducati 23.374
8 60 Netherlands Michael van der Mark BMW 28.511
9 97 Spain Xavi Vierge Honda 29.067
10 44 France Lucas Mahias Kawasaki 29.434
11 2 Italy Roberto Tamburini Yamaha 36.810
12 23 France Christophe Ponsson Yamaha 36.814
13 91 United Kingdom Leon Haslam Kawasaki 37.000
14 29 San Marino Luca Bernardi Ducati 38.862
15 36 Argentina Leandro Mercado Honda 41.674
16 16 Italy Gabriele Ruiu BMW 51.252
17 35 Malaysia Hafizh Syahrin Honda 51.382
18 52 Oliver Konig Kawasaki  
  65 United Kingdom Jonathan Rea Kawasaki  
  1 Turkey Toprak Razgatlioglu Yamaha  
  5 Philipp Oettl Ducati  
  76 France Loris Baz BMW  
  31 United States Garrett Gerloff Yamaha  
  3 Japan Kohta Nozane Yamaha  
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