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Lowes Second After First Day At Most
Alex Lowes finished second fastest and his KRT team-mate Jonathan Rea sixth after the first day of WorldSBK track action at Most in the Czech Republic. Only the FP1 lap times counted towards the riders’ overall day one classification after heavy rains arrived early in FP2, effectively halting progress for the day.
On the new Ninja ZX-10RR both Lowes and Rea made their early race preparations at a track layout neither had ever seen before.
Both official Kawasaki riders got up to speed early at the 4.212km long circuit but plans to improve set-up and pace even more in the afternoon were held back by first light and then heavy rainfall.
Neither KRT rider rode in FP2, preferring to sit it out and prepare for what is expected to be a dry weekend to come.
The Most track itself has been almost entirely resurfaced but in one key area, Turn One and the approach towards it, the old asphalt remains, delivering different feel and grip characteristics compared to the rest of the winding layout.
After losing all their potential track time in FP2 to the weather conditions both KRT riders and the whole team hope for a dry FP3 to make final pre-race evaluations before Tissot Superpole qualifying and then Race One take place on Saturday 7 August.
The weekend’s action will be completed on Sunday by the ten-lap Tissot Superpole Race in the morning, and then Race Two, a full distance event like Saturday’s opening race.
Alex Lowes, stated: “It was a shame not to get a dry session in FP2 to get more laps in because the rest of the weekend looks like it might be dry. The first experience of the track this morning was quite good. I enjoyed the layout as this track has some real nice corners. In the first section the tarmac is different compared to the other sectors, which makes it feel quite different too, but apart from that it is a quite interesting circuit. It looks like it will be a lot about changing direction in the races and many corners lead into the next ones, so you need the bike to be really agile. We tried to make a set-up change this afternoon but we did not get the chance because of the rain. I think the best plan is to start again in the morning in FP3, hopefully it will be dry and we will get to try what we wanted to this afternoon.”
Jonathan Rea, stated: “The bike was pretty good today. I had zero expectation coming here because there is no real footage or TV coverage to look at. I did a track walk with the guys from the team on Thursday and the biggest decision we have to take now is about the final gearing. There are a lot of second and third gear corners and I feel quite ‘in between’ corners sometimes. I learned the track quite well and there are a few little tricks that I can use where you can slide the tire early to gain meters on the exit; use less or more curb. We got lucky because FP1 was uninterrupted so I was able to do a lot of laps with no problems. We made a small change and went back out to finish the session so I took a lot of info from that. Unfortunately the second session, when we planned to confirm what we needed to do, was wet. A positive first day and pleasantly surprised at the feeling with the track.”
With Lucas Mahias (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) unable to ride at Most as he recuperates from surgery to his injured wrist Isaac Vinales (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) finished the first two practice sessions in 19th overall.
Loris Cresson (TPR Outdo Kawasaki) was 22nd today and new WorldSBK rider Jayson Uribe (TPR Outdo Kawasaki) was 23rd.
2021 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics
Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2021: Races 15, Wins 8, Podiums 14, Superpoles 5
Career Race Wins: 107 (92 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 199 (157 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 32 (28 for Kawasaki)
2021: Races: 15, Wins 0, Podiums 4, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 28 (8 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 1 (0 for Kawasaki)
8 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Tom Sykes 2013, Rea 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
6 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020)
5 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019)
Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 166 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 472 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 97 – second overall