WorldSBK Race 1: A birthday to remember: Razgatlioglu takes birthday victory in race one at San Juan
On the day of his 25th birthday, Razgatlioglu put on a masterclass in Argentina to claim race one honours
The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship descended on the Circuito San Juan Villicum for the Motul Argentinean round and it was Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) who claimed race one honours after a 21-lap encounter after transferring his scintillating Friday pace into Saturday action, claiming the 50th podium of his career on his 25th birthday.
QUICK STARTS FROM THE CHAMPIONSHIP TOP TWO…
Both Razgatlioglu and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), decorated in a special 1990s livery to mark a special anniversary for Kawasaki, got quick starts from second and fifth on the grid respectively to lead the race into turn one, while polesitter Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) found himself on the ground at the first turn after crashing, with the Briton falling to the back of the grid.
Out in front and Rea had put pressure on Razgatlioglu for the lead of the race before the championship leader opened up the gap to Rea to just over three seconds at the end of lap eight, with the pair holding station until the end of the race. Razgatlioglu’s win meant he claimed the 50th podium of his career while Yamaha claimed their first podium at San Juan Villicum. Rea’s second place meant he claimed Great Britain’s 810th podium, while it was only the second time Rea has not won at the Argentinean venue.
Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) claimed the tenth podium of his WorldSBK career with third place after passing Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) at around half-distance of the race. Bassani had started from the front row for the first time in his WorldSBK career but fell back at the start before fighting back into third, before Rinaldi was able to pass him. Rinaldi’s podium was Ducati’s 980th podium in WorldSBK.
FIGHTING BACK INTO THE TOP 10
The battle for fourth raged on between Bassani and Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), with Lowes, using a Top Gun-inspired livery to mark Kawasaki’s 125th anniversary, making the move through turns six and seven to move into fourth before fending off the Ducati rider down the back straight into turn eight, with Lowes finishing in fourth place and Bassani in fifth.
Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) was another who had a strong start as the lights went out but soon found himself falling back down the order as he battled with Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) and Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK); with the Dutchman claiming sixth place and Gerloff seventh. Locatelli ended the race in eighth place after starting from sixth place.
Redding ended the 21-lap race in ninth place after battling his way back from the back of the field after his turn one spill, passing numerous riders to secure a top-ten finish despite the early setback, with Leon Haslam (Team HRC) rounding out the top ten after withstanding late challenges from his rivals but unable to keep Redding behind.
CLAIMING POINTS IN RACE 1
Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) claimed 11th place in only his second round onboard Kawasaki machinery, finishing almost two seconds clear of Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) who finished in 12th place. Irish rider Eugene Laverty (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) moved up the order at the start of the race but fell back as the 21-lap progressed, eventually coming home in 13th place.
It was a strong showing for Samuele Cavalieri (Barni Racing Team) as he looked to claim his first top-ten finish in WorldSBK, but a late trip through the gravel meant he fell down to 14th place, four seconds behind Laverty. Japanese rookie Kohta Nozane (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) claimed the final points-paying position with 15th place.
Home hero Leandro Mercado (MIE Racing Honda Team) was 16th and missing out on points by around five seconds, but he was also five seconds clear of 17th-placed Christophe Ponsson (Gil Motor Sport-Yamaha). Two Argentinean riders rounded out the classified runners with Marco Solorza (OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing) and teammate Luciano Ribodino in 18th and 19th respectively.
Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) was the first retirement of the race after he had a crash at turn four on the third lap of the race. Isaac Viñales (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) had shown strong pace throughout the weekend but retired from race one after an early trip into the gravel at turn seven; although he did re-join the race, he retired in the second half of the race.
WorldSBK Race 1 Podium
- Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK
- Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +5.295s
- Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +9.417s
Tissot Superpole Race: Closest Argentinean finish as Razgatlioglu beats Redding by 0.046s in the Superpole Race
The Superpole Race went right down to the wire between Toprak Razgatlioglu and Scott Redding
The MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship continued to thrill throughout the Motul Argentinean Round as the 10-lap Tissot Superpole Race was decided by a drag race to the finish line at the Circuito San Juan Villicum with Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) and Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) dicing it out for Superpole Race honours.
RAZGATLIOGLU AND REA ON THE MOVE
Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) once again claimed the lead of the race into turn one after leapfrogging polesitter Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) while Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) was straight into podium contention from fifth on the grid and immediately battling with Razgatlioglu and Redding.
At the end of lap three, Redding lost ground to Razgatlioglu after running wide at the final corner, allowing Rea to put pressure on the Ducati rider while the Turkish star was able to extend his lead at the front of the field. Redding was able to spend a few laps recovering the time to Razgatlioglu before putting pressure on the race leader with the battling right until the line; Redding looking to make a move into turn six and seven but Razgatlioglu responded to hold on to the line by just 0.046s. Razgatlioglu claimed his 13th win of 2021 with Yamaha taking their 350th podium placement. Redding claimed second for his 20th podium this campaign with Rea settling for third; the trio starting race two from the front row.
RACE 2’S SECOND ROW
As in Saturday’s race one, Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) lost ground at the start of the race but was able to fight back to claim fourth place, his best dry-weather result, in the Superpole Race after passing Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) in lap three; Lowes would drop back to ninth in the closing stages of the race.
Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) and Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) once again battled it out on track with the Dutchman coming out on top to claim fifth place, with Italian rookie Locatelli in sixth and one second back from van der Mark.
THE THIRD ROW FOR RACE 2
After topping warm-ip on Sunday morning, Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) claimed seventh place after making progress from his starting spot, with Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) in eighth place; the Italian had battled his way up the order before losing a couple of spots in the latter stages of the race. Lowes will complete the third row after finishing ninth.
Tissot Superpole Race Podium
- Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK)
- Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) +0.046s
- Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +3.419s
WorldSBK Race 2: Redding takes race two San Juan victory after thrilling three-way battle
The top three in the Championship battled it out for Race 2 honours in the final race of the Argentinean Round
Argentinian action in WorldSBK race two at the San Juan circuit saw the championship top three engaged in a hard-fought 21-lap battle with Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) coming out on top, Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) second and Toprak Razgatlioglu third (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK). In earlier weekend racing, Razgatlioglu won Saturday’s race one and the Sprint, while Rea took two podiums – a second in race one and a third in Sunday’s quick dash.
The Turk now holds a 30 point lead over Rea (531 to 501 points) with Redding back in third on 465 points, with the title-decider in the 2021 MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship going down to the wire and to be decided at the final round, a month away at Indonesia’s Mandalika International Street Circuit on November 19-21.
THE TOP TWO BATTLE IT OUT ON THE OPENING LAPS
Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) got a good start from third on the grid while Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) led from pole position. The pair battled through the first three laps, with Redding joining the fray, and Rea taking the lead briefly before being pushed down to third on the fourth lap of 21.
On lap five, the Ducati star moved up to second with a pass on Rea before passing Razgatlioglu, while Axel Bassani (Motocorsa Racing) continued his strong form as he battled the championship’s top three for a podium position.
Rea was able to respond to move into second and looked to take the lead, but the Turkish star was able to resist the challenge on lap six. At the start of lap nine, Redding made a move on Rea into turn one to move up into second place, with Razgatlioglu still out in front, although Redding did make a move into turn eight, with Razgatlioglu responding instantly.
On lap ten at turn seven, Redding overtook Razgatlioglu to capture the lead, with Rea almost able to pass the Turkish star into Turn 8 but Razgatlioglu responded to keep second place. The move allowed Redding to escape the thrilling battles, with the fight between Razgatlioglu, Rea and Bassani continuing.
Rea cut back under Razgatlioglu into turn seven to briefly move into second place on lap 14 but Razgatlioglu regained the position under braking into turn eight. On Lap 16, Rea made the crucial overtake to move into turn one but Razgatlioglu fought back until turn five with the pair side-by-side throughout the sequence. After this, Rea was able to break away to claim second place ahead of Razgatlioglu, with Redding claiming his first victory since Catalunya.
SECURING A TOP TEN FINISH
Bassani dropped away from the lead trio in the closing stages but still recorded fourth place after another excellent race for the Italian rookie as he withstood a late challenge from Ducati stablemate Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) by just half-a-second at the end of the 21-lap race. With the top four battling it out in the early stages, Michael van der Mark (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team) was running in the lead group with fifth place before he was passed by Rinaldi, eventually coming home in sixth place.
Yamaha stablemates Andrea Locatelli (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) and Garrett Gerloff (GRT Yamaha WorldSBK Team) finished in seventh and eighth respectively with American star Gerloff missing out in seventh spot by just three tenths at the end of the race. Despite missing out on seventh place, Gerloff’s points, coupled with teammate Kohta Nozane finishing in 14th place, was enough for GRT Yamaha to claim the Best Independent Teams’ title in 2021.
Chaz Davies (Team GoEleven) and Alvaro Bautista (Team HRC) battled it out for ninth place in the closing stages of the race with just eight tenths separating the duo as they crossed the line. Bautista, a race winner at San Juan for Ducati but making his first appearance on Honda machinery in Argentina, battled back from 15th place after missing out on a top-nine spot in the morning Tissot Superpole Race.
Bautista’s Team HRC teammate, Leon Haslam, was 11th with both Team HRC riders taking points for the team’s first appearance at San Juan. Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) claimed 12th place ahead of Spanish compatriot Isaac Viñales (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) in 13th with Viñales showing strong pace throughout the weekend. Nozane took 14th place with home hero Leandro ‘Tati’ Mercado 15th (MIE Racing Honda Team) – coming home with points despite running wide at turn one late on in the race.
Irish rider Eugene Laverty (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team), still standing in for Tom Sykes, finishing in 16th place and half-a-second clear of Christophe Ponsson (Gil Motor Sport-Yamaha) in 17th and Samuele Cavalieri (Barni Racing Team) in 18th. Two Argentinean riders finished in 19th and 20th with OUTDO TPR Team Pedercini Racing duo Luciano Ribodino and Marco Solorza rounding out the field.
WorldSBK Race 2 Podium
- Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati)
- Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) +2.428s
- Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) +3.834s
WorldSBK Championship Standings After Round 12
- Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK) 531 points
- Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) 501 points
- Scott Redding (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) 465 points
WorldSSP Race 1: Pole-to-flag victory for Cluzel in WorldSSP Race 1 at San Juan
The French rider led for every lap for the first WorldSSP race in Argentina in two years to maintain his 100% record at San Juan
The first race of the FIM Supersport World Championship’s first visit to the Circuito San Juan Villicum since 2019 was won in a dominant display by French rider Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) as he kept up his record of winning every race at San Juan Villicum with a five-second margin as racing got underway for the Motul Argentinean Round.
EARLY BATTLING IN RACE 1
As the lights went out for the 19-lap race, Cluzel briefly lost the lead of the race into Turn 1 to the fast-starting Can Öncü (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) as he out-braked Cluzel into the opening corner but found himself behind the Frenchman after Turn 2 as Cluzel struck back. The pair were able to build a gap to the chasing pack, which was headed by Steven Odendaal (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) in the opening couple of laps.
Manuel Gonzalez (Yamaha ParkinGo Team) soon found himself ahead of Odendaal before Championship leader Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) made a move on his title rival for fourth place into Turn 1 at the start of Lap 4. From there, Odendaal found himself going backwards after running wide on a couple of occasions.
Cluzel was able to resist the early challenge from Öncü to maintain his lead throughout the 19-lap race as he claimed his second victory in three races and his third at the San Juan Villicum venue, maintain his perfect record in Argentina. Gonzalez and Öncü spent a few laps battling with each other for second place, with Gonzalez making the crucial move on Lap 13 at Turn 1. Cluzel’s victory meant he claimed his 60th podium in WorldSSP while it was also Yamaha’s 115th win. Öncü claimed his second podium of his WorldSSP career and became only the second non-Yamaha rider to finish on the podium at San Juan Villicum after Lucas Mahias in 2019.
TITLE BATTLE GOES ON…
Odendaal battled his back way through the field to finish in fourth place after passing Aegerter on Lap 14 at Turn 8, but the South African was unable to pull away and Aegerter kept the pressure on, setting his personal best lap time on the penultimate lap. As the final lap started, Aegerter made a move at Turn 1 but ran wide, allowing Odendaal to keep fourth place with Aegerter in fifth.
French rider Valentin Debise (GMT94 Yamaha) secured a top-six finish on his return to the Championship following injuries sustained at Magny-Cours, finishing clear of Peter Sebestyen (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) after a strong Saturday for the Hungarian rider.
Two Finnish riders finished inside the top ten with Niki Tuuli (MV Agusta Corse Clienti) in eighth place and Vertti Takala (Kallio Racing) in tenth, with the two Finnish riders sandwiching Dutch rider Glenn van Straalen (EAB Racing Team) who came home in ninth; his joint-best career best in WorldSSP.
SECURING POINTS IN RACE 1
German rider Phillip Oettl (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) had been running inside the top ten until the closing stages of the race but dropped positions as the race came to an end, finishing in 11th place and withstanding the challenge from Hannes Soomer (Kallio Racing); the Estonian finishing just 0.040s behind Oettl.
Unai Orradre (Yamaha MS Racing) took his best result of his WorldSSP career after a mid-season switch from WorldSSP300 with 13th place, while Marcel Brenner (VFT Racing) and Sheridan Morais (Wojick Racing Team) rounding out the points-paying positions in Race 1 at San Juan.
Andres Gonzalez (VFT Racing) missed out on a point scoring finish by almost three seconds with 16th place, finishing 12 clears of Leonardo Taccini (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha); Taccini making his first WorldSSP start on Yamaha machinery and also had a trip through the gravel at Turn 17. 2020 WorldSSP300 Champion Jeffrey Buis (G.A.P. MOTOZOO Racing by Puccetti), making his WorldSSP debut in Argentina, was the last classified rider in 18th place.
Matias Petratti (Yamaha MS Racing) finished the race six laps down after an early-race issue for the Argentinean rider, with Petratti bringing his back to the pits for a substantial amount of time, while Raffaele De Rosa (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) crashed out at Turn 2 on Lap 16 to force the Italian out of the race.
WorldSSP Race 1 Podium
- Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha)
- Manuel Gonzalez (Yamaha ParkinGO Team) +4.774s
- Can Öncü (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +7.000s
WorldSSP Race 2: Aegerter claims 2021 title with third as Odendaal crashes, Cluzel secures San Juan victory
Third place for Dominique Aegerter was enough to claim the 2021 Championship as Jules Cluzel added to his Argentinean record
The FIM Supersport World Championship title race came to a dramatic conclusion at the Circuito San Juan Villicum during the Motul Argentinean Round as Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) was crowned 2021 Champion with a third-place finish, as Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha) maintained his perfect record at San Juan Villicum with another commanding victory, making it four out of four in South America.
DRAMA FROM THE START
Cluzel and Can Öncü (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) both got good starts as the lights went out, as did Steven Odendaal (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) but the South African rider, who needed to outscore title rival Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) by at least three points to keep the Championship going to Indonesia, found himself on the floor after Turn 1 contact with Manuel Gonzalez (Yamaha ParkinGo Team); the incident placed under investigation by the FIM WorldSBK Stewards. With Odendaal having to fight his way back through the field, Aegerter was crowned World Champion after finishing in third place, his first World Championship title in his rookie WorldSSP campaign. Odendaal’s fightback ended on Lap 13 from 14th place after crashing at Turn 15.
The incident allowed Cluzel and Öncü to battle it out at the front of the field in the early stages of the 19-lap race, with Cluzel under pressure from the Turkish star. As the race entered the second half of the race, Cluzel started to pull away from Öncü and went on to claim his fourth victory at the San Juan circuit; maintaining his 100% record in Argentina. Öncü was able to hold second place for his second consecutive podium and third of his WorldSSP career.
A BATTLE FOR THIRD…
Peter Sebestyen (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) was a beneficiary of the incident at Turn 1 as he moved into third place as he looked for his maiden podium, but soon found himself under pressure from Aegerter and Finland’s Niki Tuuli (MV Agusta Corse Clienti). Both were able to make their way past the Hungarian rider.
Aegerter would go on to claim third place after dropping to ninth at the start following the Lap 1 incident to secure his first WorldSSP Championship with a podium finish, becoming the second Swiss rider in three years to claim the title. It was also Ten Kate Racing’s tenth WorldSSP title and their first with Yamaha. Hannes Soomer (Kallio Racing) battled his way through the field to claim fourth place after a late move on Sebestyen, with the Hungarian rider coming home in fifth place after a strong weekend; the first top-five for a Hungarian rider since Imre Toth at Monza in 2012 who finished fourth, while it was also Sebestyen’s best result of the campaign.
TAKING HOME POINTS
Valentin Debise (GMT94 Yamaha) claimed sixth place on his return from injury with a strong comeback result ahead of Finland’s Vertti Takala (Kallio Racing) in seventh place. Glenn van Straalen (EAB Racing Team) took his best WorldSSP result with eighth place ahead of Marcel Brenner (VFT Racing) while Gonzalez was able to battle back to secure a top ten finish.
Leandro Taccini (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) claimed his first WorldSSP points finish with 11th place on his first round for Ten Kate Racing, and his first with Yamaha machinery, while Philipp Oettl (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was 12th. Sheridan Morais (Wojcik Racing Team) claimed points on his WorldSSP return with 13th place, ahead of Unai Orradre (Yamaha MS Racing) who took home 14th place despite an issue on Lap 11. 2020 WorldSSP300 Champion Jeffrey Buis (G.A.P. MOTOZOO Racing by Puccetti) secured points on his WorldSSP debut with 15th place.
Home hero Andres Gonzales (VFT Racing) was out of the race on the second lap after he had an incident at Turn 7, while fellow Argentinean Mattias Petratti (Yamaha MS Racing) was 17th after he had to start from the pit lane as a sanction for stopping on track in the morning Warm-Up session and causing a Red Flag. Odendaal retired from the race following his second crash, while Tuuli had a last-lap crash from fourth place which forced him out of the race.
WorldSSP Race 2 Podium
- Jules Cluzel (GMT94 Yamaha)
- Can Öncü (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) +2.157s
- Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) +5.525s
WorldSSP Championship Standings After Round 11
- Dominique Aegerter (Ten Kate Racing Yamaha) 381 points
- Steven Odendaal (Evan Bros. WorldSSP Yamaha Team) 313 points
- Manuel Gonzalez (Yamaha ParkinGo Team) 275 points