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SBK, Rea: “Bassani? He’ll be busy. I wish him the best.”

Jonathan Rea dissatisfied after Race 1 at Portimão: “I’m frustrated. I expected more. I struggled coming out of corners, and the tire slipped a lot.”

SBK: Rea: “Bassani? He’ll be busy. I wish him the best.”

In light of the pole position he scored this morning in the Superpole, Jonathan Rea was aiming for quite another result in Race 1 at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimão, despite his third position at the finish line. A podium is always a podium, true, all the more so in a season that started and progressed badly as this one. But the Cannibal probably wished to remain arm in arm with the winners, Alvaro Bautista and Toprak Razgatlioglu. Instead, he had the usual tire problem that slowed him down in the second half of the race.

In the super pole, I completed a great lap. Not perfect, because I made some mistakes. As for the race,  I struggled during the first laps,” the Kawasaki Racing Team rider admitted. “Bautista touched me coming out of the third corner, and I had to make a comeback. I couldn’t keep the pace of the treads and, towards the middle of the race, I felt that the tire was starting to slip, and the electronics were limiting me. I struggled a lot coming out of the corners. I’m frustrated. I expected more.”

Making a comparison with yesterday he said: “We used the SC1 and entering corners wasn’t a problem, unlike the rear. When the tires start to lose grip, the bike moves a lot and becomes complicated to ride. I try to be as gentle as possible to avoid wearing them out and so that the electronics intervene. But, in doing so, I go slow. Hopefully, we’ll be closer tomorrow.

Regarding the electronics and possible interventions, he added: “I’m not smart enough to understand what to do with the electronics. I try to give the best feedback to the engineers. Their job is to ask for them to be able to find the answer. I don’t think we’ve really improved in this regard despite the support I’ve given over the weekend. We work with what we have. It’s certainly not the lack of people or ideas that can improve the situation. A total change would be stupid when there’s only one round left to the end of the season.”

The almost former Kawasaki rider also spoke about his future successor, Axel Bassani: “I heard about him signing an hour before the press release. Guim Roda sent me a message. It’s a great opportunity for him to join an official team. We saw each other last night in the paddock, and I told him that he’ll be involved with a group of exceptional people. He’ll have things to do.. I wish him all the best.”


Translated by Leila Myftija

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