Jonathan Rea increased his World Superbike Championship lead to 47 points after winning his fifth race from five starts in 2017 at Motorland Aragon. The reigning champion took advantage of a late crash for Chaz Davies who lost control while defending the lead from the Kawasaki, enabling him to maintain his perfect start to 2017.
The day had begun so encouragingly for Ducati with Davies claiming pole position ahead of the two factory Kawasakis and the race soon descended into a head-to-head between the two team leaders, Tom Sykes and Marco Melandri proving unable to match their pace out in front.
A gripping battle between the two ultimately came to a head in the latter stages with Rea grabbing the lead on lap sixteen, edging ahead on the exit of turn seven. Davies soon responded, diving up the inside of turn one as the penultimate lap began but unfortunately for the Welshman, he wouldn’t see the start/finish straight again, losing the front end of his Panigale at the final corner and handing victory to Rea.
Melandri got the better of Sykes for second with the Yorkshireman claiming his fourth podium of the year despite battling illness throughout the weekend. The Yamahas of Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark continued their consistent start to the season with fourth and fifth, Lowes bouncing back after a mechanical failure in SP2 left him twelfth on the grid.
Jordi Torres finished a lonely sixth for Althea BMW ahead of Leandro Mercado who marked his return to WorldSBK from injury with a solid seventh. Eugene Laverty was eighth on the factory RSV4 while the Hondas of Stefan Bradl and Nicky Hayden completed the top ten.
WorldSBK 2017: Spanish Round – Race One Result
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