After a near-perfect qualifying lap in this morning’s Superpole session, 24-year-old Razgatlıoğlu had a clean start from second position on the grid, jostling with Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea and Ducati rider Michael Ruben Rinaldi for the lead in the opening lap. However, there were challenges to overcome in the Riviera Di Rimini heat.
It took a few laps for Razgatlıoğlu to gel with the balance of his R1 WorldSBK and the available track grip, in which time Rinaldi had taken off into the distance and the Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK rider found himself battling the other Ducati of Scott Redding for third place. A mistake by Rea on lap nine was an opportunity to recover to second position, which Razgatlıoğlu then fought hard to build upon until the chequered flag.
Razgatlıoğlu’s fifth podium of 2021 so far sees him climb to 95 championship points in total, taking a small bite out of Rea’s overall lead (126 points) and helping to pull a gap to third-placed Redding on 85 points.
Local hero Andrea Locatelli improved from a disappointing pace on Friday to set the 11th fastest time in the 15-minute Superpole session, meaning he started Race 1 from the middle of the fourth row on the grid. With cheering fans in the grandstands for the first time in over 18 months, as some 5,000 spectators watch the WorldSBK action in person this weekend, the young Italian rode another consistent race to finish ninth, and has capacity to improve in tomorrow’s races.
Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK will be back in action tomorrow morning with a short 15-minute Warm-Up at 9:00, followed by the no holds barred 10-lap Superpole Race at 11:00 (CEST) and Race 2 at 14:00, all in search for the team’s first victory of the season, further podiums and crucial championship points.
For full Race 1 results, click here.