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Australia

Magny-Cours WSBK: Razgatlioglu holds off Bautista for Superpole win

Yamaha World Superbike rider Toprak Razgatlioglu recovered from a sluggish start to beat title rivals Alvaro Bautista and Jonathan Rea to victory in the Superpole race at Magny-Cours.

Toprak Razgatlioglu, Pata Yamaha WorldSBK

Toprak Razgatlioglu, Pata Yamaha WorldSBK

Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Razgatlioglu suffered massive wheelspin off the line from second on the grid and dropped down the order, while Bautista went in the other direction and quickly moved up to second behind polesitter Rea.

As Bautista overtook Rea for the lead at the Adelaide Hairpin on the opening lap, Razgatlioglu began his recovery and quickly repassed the second Kawasaki of Alex Lowes, before forcing his way past the BMW of Scott Redding to assume third position.

The Turkish rider then tacked on to the back of Rea’s Kawasaki and after an intense but brief battle finally made the move stick into the chicane at the end of lap 4.

It paved the foundation for a close duel between Razgatlioglu and Bautista for victory, which continued for much of the remainder of the race.

On lap 6, Razgatlioglu passed Bautista for the lead into the right-hander at Turn 14, but the Ducati rider continued to circle right behind him to mount an attack.

Two laps later Bautista got a great run exiting Turn 3 and was ahead of Razgatlioglu going into the Adelaide Hairpin, but the Yamaha rider took a tighter line to hold on to the top spot.

On lap 9 Bautista made another attempt at passing Razgatlioglu for the same corner but this time he clipped the back of the Yamaha, suffering damage to his own Ducati in the process.

The loose piece of bodywork distracted Bautista enough to allow Razgatlioglu to build up a small buffer up front, with the Yamaha rider never ceding that advantage to claim his seventh win of the season and recover some of the ground he lost with his retirement in Saturday’s opener.

After coming to blows with Razgatlioglu, Bautista immediately dropped behind the Kawasaki of Rea in the battle for second position.

But the Spaniard valiantly fought the Kawasaki rider on the final lap and was able to beat him to the finish by just 0.0149s after a battle that continued into the Turn 16/17 chicane.

Lowes was not able to contend with the leading trio in the race despite showing promising pace in practice, but did manage to pass the BMW of Redding to finish fourth.

Motocorsa Ducati’s Axel Bassani was the top independent rider in fifth, ahead of the factory Ducati of Michael Ruben Rinaldi, as Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha), Loris Baz (Bonovo BMW) and Andrea Locatelli (Yamaha) rounded out the top 10.

Honda’s difficult weekend continued as Iker Lecuona could only finish 11th, with his teammate Xavi Vierge retiring from the race with a crash at Adelaide just after the halfway point of the race.

Magny-Cours WSBK -  Superpole race results:

Cla # Rider Bike Laps Gap
1 1 Turkey Toprak Razgatlioglu
Yamaha 10
2 19 Spain Alvaro Bautista
Ducati 10 1.891
3 65 United Kingdom Jonathan Rea
Kawasaki 10 2.040
4 22 United Kingdom Alex Lowes
Kawasaki 10 3.983
5 45 United Kingdom Scott Redding
BMW 10 5.019
6 47 Italy Axel Bassani
Ducati 10 5.690
7 21 Italy Michael Ruben Rinaldi
Ducati 10 6.713
8 31 United States Garrett Gerloff
Yamaha 10 11.797
9 76 France Loris Baz
BMW 10 12.194
10 55 Italy Andrea Locatelli
Yamaha 10 13.092
11 7 Spain Iker Lecuona
Honda 10 13.794
12 5 Germany Philipp Oettli
Ducati 10 14.285
13 60 Netherlands Michael van der Mark
BMW 10 14.413
14 44 France Lucas Mahias
Kawasaki 10 16.345
15 29 San Marino Luca Bernardi
Ducati 10 23.491
16 3 Japan Kohta Nozane
Yamaha 10 25.030
17 35 Malaysia Hafizh Syahrin
Honda 10 26.046
18 50 Ireland Eugene Laverty
BMW 10 28.588
19 2 Italy Roberto Tamburini
Yamaha 10 28.675
20 36 Argentina Leandro Mercado
Honda 10 28.837
21 23 France Christophe Ponsson
Yamaha 10 29.338
22 99 Oscar Gutierrez
Kawasaki 10 29.476
23 52 Czech Republic Oliver Konig
Kawasaki 10 34.839
97 Spain Xavi Vierge
Honda 4

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