Welcome to the beta version of the new Women & Golf website. Our web monkeys are still hard at work and welcome your feedback.  


Robin Miller: Being a good sport is dependent on your viewpoint

Jonathan Rea's gesture in allowing Tom Sykes to take second place in the final race of the World Superbike Championship and, as a result, runners-up position in the championship itself was not applauded by all - the deprived Aruba Ducati team for a start.

Indeed Ducati boss Claudio Domenicale branded it ‘unsportsmanlike’ and his rider, Chas Davies, did not look too chuffed either. Sykes, on the other hand, was not only mightily relieved - he was delighted. And, probably, surprised.

There was no hint of pre-race orders, although there might have been. Cynics might ask why Rea didn't just follow Sykes to guarantee his place in the championship? Well, there is one characteristic that separates champions, great champions, from others. They never get bored with winning. And Rea genuinely believed he had a chance of catching Davies. Only when he realised, with a couple of laps to go, that he couldn't did he ease up and gift Sykes second place.


Rea hadn't had too many wins in the final run-in to the title and his frustration showed. Those last few laps were electrifying, probably the best he has put together all year . Of course, there was a bit of showboating on that final lap but Sykes was far from ungrateful. There was also more than a hint of genuineness from both riders who have been rivals rather than team-mates - not unusual, indeed healthy to a point - in a team of two teams.

As for Ducati? Their reaction was somewhat hypocritical because they would have done exactly the same. Whether we like it or not, whether team orders were given or not, there are certain times when they come into play.

It is interesting to speculate, however, what the result might have been had BSB's Showdown formula been adopted. It is an idea which Ducati's Superbike boss, Ernesto  Marinelli, quite likes. I wonder why? Oh yes, Davies would have won…

Articles you may like


More WorldSBK

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram