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WorldSBK Assen: Razgatlioglu third again - ‘I could not pass Alvaro’

Toprak Razgatlioglu’s legendary zeal to win WorldSBK races on the Pata Yamaha remains a desire still in 2022 after the first four races of the championship. Assen race one was just one more third place finish to add to his trio of thirds at Motorland in the opening weekend.

Lining up on pole he thought he may be in for the race one win at Assen, but Rea and Bautista had other ideas. So third it remains, with two more Assen races on Sunday to switch things up.

“I started to follow Rea, and try to save the rear tyre,” said Razgatlioglu about race one, “But after, Alvaro was coming. This is big problem because his first two sectors were slow, but just the straight, he went. I stay alone. In the lap I tried coming to the front again. I could not pass Alvaro, because not easy! In the last sector he fast. The first sector is slow, but it’s not easy to pass him. Also Johnny is fast, but in the last sector I was always catching him.”


He had a familiar issue with his front tyre life as he had in Aragon. “In the race also the front tyre dropped. But the bike setup, feeling, everything is OK. I just had a plan to follow and in the last laps try fighting. But this race was not like this, because Alvaro arrived. He’s very fast in the last sector - but I tried my best.”

For Sunday, maybe not so much of a change to be made.
“For setup, I’m feeling that the bike is good,” he continued. “Just maybe we will change front tyre. But, we are ready to race again. Maybe I will try in the first laps go alone. I don’t know. Tomorrow we will see.”

The multiple third places, not wins, may be personally annoying for Razgatlioglu but he knows it is better than last year in many regards.

“Last year we were not in a good position here. I tried for win. But sometimes I try good plan, but in the race is changing things. I hope tomorrow. I remember last year also Aragon I was not really strong. First race third position, second race sixth. Like this. A bad start. But now, here I’m OK It’s good. I search for a win - I need a win. I hope for one tomorrow.”

Toprak’s Superpole record on Saturday morning was astounding, nearly half a second faster than the next best rider. Even the man himself was impressed. “Incredible… Also now I’m ‘feeling’ the bike much better. The lap time was coming easy. For me, it’s incredible the Superpole today.”

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