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WorldSBK Estoril: ‘I try everything’ - Razgatlioglu

Before the opening WorldSBK race at Estoril some people were talking like this track could be the perfect venue for the reigning World Champion to record not just his first race win of 2022, but his first triple in WorldSBK history. He has come close before, but unfortunately regulations or bad luck have intervened.

This time it was the final corner presence of the hyper-fast Ducati Panigale V4R and the equally fast Alvaro Bautista that turned Toprak’s corner exit lead into a second place on Saturday afternoon, as the Ducati flew past up the straight. No Toprak triple here but he was not too disconsolate, just resigned to his fate, it seemed.

“I’m happy because I’m feeling like 2021 in the race,” said the Turkish star. “I tried some hard braking and I passed the riders easy. Also I rode very well. Just the last corner and the last lap in the straight, Alvaro passed me. Normally I’m waiting, but not like this because I am feeling like I I ride a 600 bike. But anyway, I fight a good race.”


A tough race, with lots of battles with KRT’s Jonathan Rea, took its toll on Razgatlioglu’s set-up and tyres, which did not help at the end. “My tyre started to drop and also not good the exit of the corner. Also, Ducati gain really fast in the straight and really good exit of the corner because of more power. I think my rear tyre not finish. I think Alvaro again passed me because the Ducati in the straight is a very fast bike. But anyway, I’m fighting.”

The many and often fights with Rea were not stressful for Razgatlioglu, not in themselves, at least.
“No, I was not feeling stress, just enjoying,” he said. “After I fight with Jonny, I close the gas because don’t kill the tyre because I have more laps for the race. I’m not pushing. After, I see Johnny a little bit wide in one corner, I tried everything. Also, I see 36.9, 36.8, but not enough for Alvaro because he was coming also very easy because in the straight is coming 0.3, 0.4, I dunno? We are really strong in the braking, but not enough this!”

When asked if he knew that Bautista would be the final problem for him at the end of the race, Razgatlioglu said, “Yeah. Tomorrow also same problem… I try also for Alvaro. I know he’s not really strong on the brakes, but I’m really strong on the brakes. Just try also last corner races, try a little bit better but not enough.”

Razgatlioglu knew he tried everything in the race, although he always feels under control, however out of shape he looks.

“Yeah. I try everything in the race,” he said. “I tried the hard braking. I tried to keep a good line. Also I tried to save the rear tyre. The last five laps I tried everything.”

Rea tried to pass on the inside of Toprak as the Turkish rider ran a little wide. This weekend, unlike their now infamous Assen contact in race two that led each to fall, the touch was tyre-to-tyre, with Razgatlioglu not sure who it was.

“I’m felt it a little bit but I don't know which rider, Johnny or Alvaro. I was feeling a little bit like this in my bike. I did not look back.”

There is a possibility of rain on to which Razgatlioglu said, “I’m ready. Rain conditions and dry conditions. No problem. I like it rain or dry. But, in dry conditions with the slick tyre. Not intermediate. With slick tyre, I’m okay!”

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