Rea Wins Assen Opener after Van der Mark Crash

Jonathan Rea’s extraordinary WSBK record at Assen continued after the reigning champion won a thrilling opening race of the weekend on Saturday. The Ulsterman took advantage of crashes for teammate Tom Sykes and home favourite Michael van der Mark before defeating Chaz Davies in the closing stages for his fourth win of 2016.

With Friday practice effectively a washout, Superpole represented a journey into the unknown for the riders and it was no surprise to see Sykes, so often the man to beat over a single lap, dominate the session for this 33rd career pole position. Sylvain Guintoli and Davide Giugliano completed the front row but both riders would drop out early in race one, the Frenchman crashing while mechanical misfortune ended the Italian’s afternoon.

A leading group of five had broken away at the front with Davies leading Sykes with Rea, van der Mark and Nicky Hayden also in close attendance. For Sykes, the race began to unravel following consecutive overtakes by van der Mark and Rea at Ramshoek, relegating him to fourth. In an attempt to regain third from his teammate, Sykes overshot the final chicane before losing the front end and ending his race in the gravel trap.

Free from the sister Kawasaki, Rea turned his attention to van der Mark and grabbed second from the Honda rider on lap seventeen but the home favourite fought back, passing the world champion for the lead with both riders overhauling Davies four laps from the finish. The home fans were starting to believe that a home victory could be on but a huge moment at Duikersloot released Rea back into the lead before a second slip-up on the penultimate lap took Michael out of the race altogether.

Rea took full advantage to claim victory with Davies forced to settle for second after being delayed behind the van der Mark crash. Nicky Hayden ensured Honda would still be represented on the rostrum with his best WorldSBK result so far. Leon Camier capitalised on the drama to finish a fantastic fourth for MV Agusta while Althea BMW’s Jordi Torres and Ioda Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori ensured six different manufacturers made up the top six.

Markus Reiterberger finished seventh while Alex Lowes brought the sole remaining PATA Yamaha home in a disappointing eighth.


WorldSBK 2016: Prosecco DOC Dutch Round – Race One Result

11. Jonathan ReaKawasakiKawasaki Racing Team34:12.54225
27. Chaz Racing – Ducati+1.66220
369. Nicky HaydenHondaHonda World Superbike Team+5.36516
42. Leon CamierMV AgustaMV Agusta Reparto Corse+15.54213
581. Jordi TorresBMWAlthea BMW Racing Team+16.92211
632. Lorenzo SavadoriApriliaIodaRacing Team+22.46010
721. Markus ReiterbergerBMWAlthea BMW Racing Team+23.9099
822. Alex LowesYamahaPata Yamaha Official WSBK Team+29.8938
940. Roman RamosKawasakiTeam GoEleven+41.9107
1044. Lucas MahiasKawasakiPedercini Racing+48.3236
1125. Josh BrookesBMWMilwaukee BMW+53.6385
1215. Alex de AngelisApriliaIodaRacing Team+56.3224
1312. Xavi ForesDucatiBarni Racing Team+1:03.7413
14151. Matteo BaioccoDucatiVFT Racing+1:14.7922
1594. Matthieu LussianaBMWTeam ASPI+1:38.4851
1616. Josh HookKawasakiGrillini Racing Team+1 Lap
17119. Pawel SzkopekYamahaTeam Toth+1 Lap
NC60. Michael van der MarkHondaHonda World Superbike Team+2 Laps
NC17. Karel AbrahamBMWMilwaukee BMW+9 Laps
NC34. Davide Racing – Ducati+10 Laps
NC66. Tom SykesKawasakiKawasaki Racing Team+13 Laps
NC50. Sylvain GuintoliYamahaPata Yamaha Official WSBK Team+17 Laps
NQ9. Dominic SchmitterKawasakiGrillini Racing Team
NQ56. Peter SebestyenYamahaTeam Toth
NQ11. Saeed Al SulaitiKawasakiPedercini Racing