It was Cortese who made the early running today, as an impressive Superpole performance saw him qualify second, to secure only his second front row start aboard the GRT Yamaha R1. Lowes headed up the second row having qualified fourth, while Melandri and Baz were expecting a tough race after securing positions 13 and 16 on the grid.
Disruption due to rain meant that WorldSBK Race 1 finally got underway at the third attempt, with Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes immediately pulling away at the head of the race. Lowes shadowed the reigning World Champion until the spray from Rea's bike made visibility an issue, at which point he made his move for the lead. Lowes had built up a lead of more than a second when he crashed out at turn 11 after aquaplaning on standing water.
In the meantime, Baz had managed to work his way through the field, passing the two GRT Yamaha riders who were battling for position in a six-rider group, and slotting into fifth place behind Leon Haslam and Alvaro Bautista. When Haslam crashed out the Frenchman pushed hard to catch Bautista for the final podium place but was unable to match the Spaniard's pace on a drying track and had to settle for fourth place at the line.
Melandri and Cortese got the better of the group in which they had been battling for the majority of the race, pulling away in the closing stages of the 18-lap race to secure sixth and seventh places at the chequered flag.
Pata Yamaha rider, Michael van der Mark, played no part in proceedings today, following a heavy crash in FP2 yesterday in which he sustained a concussion, a fractured Trapezium and Radius in his right arm and two fractured ribs on his right side. The Jerez race winner remained in Rimini Hospital overnight as a precautionary measure but has now been released. Van der Mark will undergo surgery on his fractured radius early next week, after which doctors will be able to better assess the time needed for recovery.