Jonathan Rea – Double World Champion

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Jonathan Rea wrote his name into the history books by securing his second World Superbike Championship in succession. The last time this feat was achieved was 17 years ago by the legendary Carl Fogarty. A second place finish in the opening race at Losail in Qatar was all Rea needed to secure the necessary points.

Jonathan Rea World Champion
Rea had claimed an eighth career Superpole earlier in the day, fending off former MotoGP star Nicky Hayden in the process. Tom Sykes, Rea’s team-mate and the only rider who could threaten his world title challenge only made it to the second row of the grid.

In race one, Rea chased eventual race winner Chaz Davies on his Ducati in the early laps, holding station behind him for some time. Sykes laboured at the start on a fresh set of tyres but managed to pick up his pace towards closing sages, going from fifth to fourth by passing the Honda of Nicky Hayden. Once Jonathan realised that he would earn more than enough points to secure the championship, he eased off to collect a comfortable second place.

Jonathan Rea World Champion

Rea was clearly elated with his double world title: “It is incredible to have won back-to-back championships.  I am really happy and proud of our work because this bike was so new. To win in the first year of a new model is incredible and I want to thank Kawasaki for building such a good base bike. It felt like we really had to win the championship this time so I have to thank everybody all around me in the team. I want to thank each and every one of them.”

Jonathan Rea World Champion

Throughout 2016, Rea has been a model of speed and consistency, claiming nine race wins, eight second places and five third places. Remarkably, he has only failed to stand on the podium on three occasions.

In the final race of the weekend, a mechanical issue saw Rea falter and drop into a midfield battle, whilst Chas Davies’ Ducati streaked off with the lead. However, an engine blow up  for Saeed al Sulaiti meant the race was redflagged, which enabled Rea’s Kawasaki team to ring the changes. After the restart, Rea catapulted his way to second place, in blistering fashion.

Jonathan Rea World Champion

With less than a lap remaining, the Northern Irishman knew he hadn’t the pace to catch Davies and end the season with a win. So in an incredible sporting gesture, he let his teammate and former title rival Tom Sykes claim second and with it, the runner’s up spot in the championship standings.

 

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About Author

Chris, known as Cess on the forums, is a long time RMS member. He is a fervent motorsports enthusiast and lover of all things automotive. He can be found on the ditches of most Irish rallies, at Mondello watching drifting or in front of the TV watching motorbike racing.

RMS Forum Comments

Cess 19:17 | Sat 27 Feb, 2016 | Report
Full build up and race one on YouTube for anyone that missed it dgnxA18irbc
BLS 01:50 | Sun 28 Feb, 2016 | Report
Cracker 1st race didn't think the Honda would be up there,VDM no messing lol
BLS 22:28 | Sun 28 Feb, 2016 | Report
Double for Rea off to a great start
Cess 23:06 | Sun 28 Feb, 2016 | Report
Chas Davies unlucky to go down. Micky Van Der Mark and Ten Kate were pretty rapid in the Honda. When Sykes goes backwards, he really can't stop
BLS 13:27 | Mon 29 Feb, 2016 | Report
| Chas Davies unlucky to go down. Micky Van Der Mark and Ten Kate were pretty rapid in the Honda. When Sykes goes backwards, he really can't stop
Sykes is carrying on from last year is he pushing that hard early on were is tyres r shot half race? Johnny n the kwak look like 1 ,made for each other. Honda surprised me with speed
Cess 18:07 | Mon 29 Feb, 2016 | Report
I don't think it's a tyres issue anymore with Sykes. He was unfortunate that Giuliano touched him in the second race, knocking him out of his rythmn. I think he has a total mental block - once he slips down the rankings, he can't make the places back up. My DA would contend that Sykes can't or doesn't like scrapping for positions and is only good with a clear track in front of him.
nobby 22:27 | Mon 29 Feb, 2016 | Report
great wins for Rea. Davies is one to watch for sure sykes will still be there abouts with the kwak
BLS 18:51 | Sat 12 Mar, 2016 | Report
Another win for the wee man,just gets out there n gets the business done :)
DriftnSlide 17:22 | Fri 15 Apr, 2016 | Report
Looking forward to this weekend, one of the best tracks in the WSBK series. Lets hope JR can add to his 7 wins here so far. :D I can't help thinking the Ducati's will be hard to stay with round here though.
fabiostar 17:43 | Fri 15 Apr, 2016 | Report
should be an epic race(s).. JR has a great record round it but as you say ricky the dikes with chaz onboard will be hard to beat..
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