Alvaro Bautista wins as Petrucci claims maiden podium finish in Donington

Alvaro Bautista wins as Petrucci claims maiden podium finish in Donington

Alvaro Bautista got back to his winning form as Danilo Petrucci claimed his maiden podium finish after edging Jonathan Rea in Race 2 of the British WorldSBK championship at Donington Park.

Alvaro Bautista reestablished his dominance over the field to win a second hard-fought WorldSBK race of the weekend at Donington Park, despite a catastrophic lap one crash involving Tom Sykes and Michael Ruben Rinaldi.

Having witnessed a victorious Razgatlioglu stop a stunning 11-race winning streak in the preceding Superpole Race, Bautista and his Yamaha opponent would again engage in a fierce duel that entertained spectators for a few laps.

Razgatlioglu lined up on pole for the first time this weekend after winning his second race of the year during the Superpole Race, a position he immediately lost to Bautista. However Razgatlioglu pushed past as the world champion strayed slightly on the first turn’s out.

Loris Baz, Tom Sykes and Michael Ruben Rinaldi were involved in a significant crash going out of turn eight that resulted in the lifting of the red flags before lap one was concluded.

At the crest of the swift Coppice right-hander coming into the back straight, Sykes lost the rear of his BMW M 1000 RR forcing the Englishman to be thrown into a massive high-side with a heavy landing that originally made him appear startled.

A short while later, Sykes was seen sitting up on his knees and evidently in pain as he leaned forward wincing, with Baz—who appeared unharmed—helping his teammate.

Similar concerns were raised by Rinaldi, who was trailing Sykes immediately and appeared to strike the BMW as it was flipping before becoming tangled up with it and his own Ducati and crashing into the gravel. After being surrounded by medical personnel for a while before being taken to an ambulance, Ducati tweeted “No reasons to be scared of” according to the Medical Centre.

Bautista continued where he left off during the red flag by securing the hole-shot into Turn 1 once more with the race reduced to 22 laps.

Rea attempted a bold move on Bautista into turn four as he was through on Razgatlioglu, but ran wide and gave the lead back to the Ducati rider. When Razgatlioglu passed Rea at the end of the lap to retake second place, Rea’s intention of claiming the lead took a further hit.

At the Melbourne Loop on lap two, Razgatlioglu stood Bautista up with a last-second maneuver which allowed Rea to overtake Bautista for second place.

Similar to Race 1, a sizable group was able to hold onto the forefront of the pack thanks to Razgatlioglu’s pace. With Rea and Bautista still in second and third place, the leading group featured Andrea Locatelli, Garrett Gerloff, Alex Lowes and Petrucci.

With 16 laps remaining, the top three started to pull away and everything changed. In the fight for fourth place, Locatelli gave in to Lowes’ pressure as the Kawasaki rider made his move on lap eight.

Bautista, who was eager to keep going, passed Rea at turn nine to start his victory charge. Following the overtake, Rea lost time and Bautista began to draw closer to Razgatlioglu.

With ten laps remaining, Bautista attempted to make a move into turn one, but Razgatlioglu countered by bringing his Yamaha back to the inside of him in turn four to reclaim first place.

The second time through, Bautista was able to maintain control thanks to a tighter line at the bottom of the Craner Curves and another repetition of his pass on the run down to turn one.

From this point on, Bautista accelerated to full speed while Razgatlioglu’s challenge faded. The defending champion breezed to the finish line about three seconds ahead of his challenger, regaining and extending any ground lost due to his Superpole Race glitch.

Rea’s tenacious effort was gone as he was passed by Bautista, and he instead fell into the grasp of a ravenous trailing pack lead by Danilo Petrucci. The Italian overcame a slow start that put him in seventh place to climb back to third place.

In the race for third, Petrucci was making headway as he passed Lowes and prepared to attack Rea on the first curve. Although the maneuver didn’t work out, Petrucci only had to wait three more corners for his maiden overtaking to be successful.

Third place ended up becoming the first podium finish for the two-time MotoGP race winner in WorldSBK as well as for Barni Ducati since Javi Fores’ second-place finish in Argentina in 2018.

With five laps remaining, Scott Redding made an impressive run as well and caught up to Lowes. One lap later, Redding used the same maneuver on Rea that he used on Lowes at the Melbourne Loop.

Scott Redding’s perseverance over the course of the weekend, which saw him work his way up the standings from a lowly starting spot, was rewarded with a fine fourth-place finish. The British rider came on strong in the closing laps to overtake four rivals for his and BMW’s best finish of the year.

Going the other way, Rea and his Kawasaki teammate Alex Lowes had to settle for fifth and sixth respectively ahead of Axel Bassani in seventh as the Italian edged over his fellow countryman Andrea Locatelli on the final lap.

Following a strong start, Garrett Gerloff placed fifth early on before eventually falling to ninth place, just ahead of Philipp Oettl who rounded out the top ten.

Dominique Aegerter, Remy Gardner, Bradley Ray, the home favorite, Iker Lecuona, and Hafizh Syahrin all earned the final points earning spots.

2023 British WorldSBK | Donington Park | Race 2 Results | Round 6 of 12
1Alvaro BautistaESPAruba DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R22 Laps
2Toprak RazgatliogluTURPata Crescent RacingYamaha R1+2.650
3Danilo PetrucciITABarni Spark RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+7.936
4Scott ReddingGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M 1000 RR+9.198
5Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR+9.506
6Alex LowesGBRKawasaki Racing TeamKawasaki ZX-10RR+9.960
7Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa RacingDucati Panigale V4 R+10.292
8Andrea LocatelliITAPata Crescent RacingYamaha R1+10.537
9Garrett GerloffUSABonovo RacingBMW M 1000 RR+11.036
10Philipp OettlGERGo ElevenDucati Panigale V4 R+14.317
11Dominique AegerterCHEGYTR GRTYamaha R1+17.697
12Remy GardnerAUSGYTR GRTYamaha R1+23.762
13Bradley RayGBRMotoxracingYamaha R1+24.052
14Iker LecuonaESPTeam HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R+24.543
15Hafizh SyahrinMALMIE RacingHonda CBR1000RR-R+48.163
16Isaac VinalesESPTPR by Vinales RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR+50.201
17Oliver KonigCZEOrelac RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR+1m >
18Eric GranadoBRAMIE RacingHonda CBR1000RR-R+1m >
19Lorenzo BaldassarriITAGMT 94Yamaha R1+1m >
DNFTito RabatESPPuccetti RacingKawasaki ZX-10RR
DNFXavi ViergeESPTeam HRCHonda CBR1000RR-R
DNSMichael Ruben RinaldiITAAruba DucatiDucati Panigale V4 R
DNSTom SykesGBRBMW Motorrad WorldSBKBMW M 1000 RR
DNSLoris BazFRABonovo RacingBMW M 1000 RR

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