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WorldSBK Catalunya: Sprint race win for van der Mark; Redding eighth

Yamaha’s Michael van der Mark took advantage of some chaos caused by a crashing Avaro Bautista to open a gap on reigning WorldSBK king Jonathan Rea and take the Catalunya WorldSBK win this morning.

Bautista had breezed past the pair of them on the long start/finish straight to take the lead but then suffered an old-school highside on the new Fireblade at turn three which caused Rea to hit the Honda and van der Mark jumped into a big lead which he held for his first win of 2020. Bautista has been declared fit with a fractured metatarsal.

Bautista’s team-mate Leon Haslam crashed the lap before in a tangle with Federico Caricasulo and both Honda men were taken to the medical centre. The former BSB champion has been declared fit with just a big bruise on his leg.


Rea, meanwhile, made the best of the situation and increased his championship lead by seven points as title rival Scott Redding finished in eighth place after taking a gamble on the SC0 while all about him used the SCX.

It means Rea has almost two feature race wins in hand over the Ducati rider with only two race weekends left to run.

Ten Kate Yamaha’s Loris Baz completed the podium with only half a second gap to the winner.

Chaz Davies was the first Ducati home in fourth place but he was hassled all the way by American Garrett Gerloff who is really getting to grips with his version of the Yamaha R1, able to give the Welshman a hard time - even on the brakes where Davies is traditionally the strongest wherever he is racing.

Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Team GoEleven Ducati) was sixth with Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team) slipping from third to seventh, with Redding eighth.

In ninth was Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) while wildcard rider Jonas Folger (Bononvo Action by MGM Yamaha) scored a top ten after starting almost last.

Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) did not make the sprint race after suffering chest injuries in a warm-up crash, plus right foot and ankle contusions.

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