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SBK, Rea: “Sunday I want to feel happy, regardless of the ending”

“I’m not thinking much about the championship. Toprak was impressive in the FP1, but I was still in the pits, so I don’t know if that gap corresponds to reality or not. The superpole will be crucial for the race.”

SBK: Rea: “Sunday I want to feel happy, regardless of the ending”


After a heated and exciting dualism that lasted for the entire season, the highly anticipated challenge between Jonathan Rea and Toprak Razgatlioglu has reached its final act. The gravitational center around which the attention of enthusiasts and professionals revolves is called the Mandalika Circuit. Despite its location on the Indonesian island of Lombok, the unprecedented layout contains characteristic elements of different tracks scattered around the globe, and the Cannibal knows something about it...

The asphalt is a bit dirty. Luckily, things improved in the FP2 compared to the morning. Also, there are some small bumps. The overall layout is nice and fun. Turn one  is very reminiscent of Donington Park, the third instead  Misano, while the difference is mainly made on the lap in the central one. Finally, the last corners are very similar to those at Termas de Rio Hondo. Being new, the ideal trajectory is almost unique, otherwise there’s the risk of going over the dirt. Therefore, the Superpole will be essential in terms of the race,” he pointed out.

Nonetheless, Friday’s free practice immediately gave the Kawasaki Racing Team an unpleasant inconvenience, so much so that they remained with their arms folded in the garage for most of the opening session due to a technical problem. Nothing to worry about. In the afternoon, he immediately returned to action, with a second time in 1’34”934 ”404 (behind his direct rival by just 174 thousandths).

We were able to locate it and solve it in a short time. It wasn’t the best thing to actually lose the entire FP1, which slowed down my learning of the track. In any case, the following round turned out to be quite positive. The pace is good, and the Ninja works well,” he continued. “We need to have more control of the bike and improve something in braking. Some changes in balance with the frame should help us. We still have some margin in our pocket, so I’m optimistic for tomorrow.

Thanks to the 30-point margin from the multiple champion in the category, the Turkish rider could already conquer the world championship at the end of Race 1 tomorrow morning. Rea will face an authentic sporting feat, even if beating the Razgatlioglu seen today (especially in the morning) won’t be easy at all ...

Really impressive. He’s very fast. I find it unusual to give the rest of the group nearly two seconds, including me. But I was still in the pits, so I don’t know if this gap corresponds to reality or not. As we can see from the FP2, we’re not too far. I’m convinced that by solving today’s problems and putting on the right combination of tires, we’ll be able to have our say. At the moment, I’m not thinking too much about the championship. I know the combinations. My goal is to win and give it my all. I hope to succeed. Sunday evening, I want to feel happy for what was done, regardless of the epilogue,” he admitted.


Translated by Leila Myftija

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