WSBK Portugal: Sykes and Rea victorious
Jonathan Rea gets his knee down on the wet Portimao race track in Portugal
World Superbike Championship: Race one
Tom Sykes increased his lead in the championship by winning the first race at a cloudy Portimao race track in Portugal. Honda rider Jonathan Rea took the lead off the line but fell behind Sykes on the Kawasaki and Aprilia rider Marco Melandri. The exciting race saw a lot of battling for second and third place but Sykes was in great form and managed to increase the gap to the rest of the field by as much as three seconds. He managed this gap all the way to the chequered flag on lap 20. Second place was tied up by Sylvian Guintoli ahead of Loris Baz in third. Melandri finished in fourth while initial leader Jonathan Rea faded to finish in fifth.
World Superbike Championship: Race two
Race two was even more exciting as by now the clouds that had been threatening all day finally let loose a solid deluge. The wet race saw Jonathan Rea hit the front with Sykes and Chaz Davies on the Ducati in hot pursuit. Rea was in stunning form in the wet and looked supremely comfortable in the difficult conditions. He took off into the spray and didn't look back, taking the win and gaining valuable championship points. Had he looked back though he would have been treated to a lot of action as Sykes slowly fell off the pace and Aprilia riders Guintoli and Melandri came through the field. They even brought down the gap to leader Rea but Guintoli made a late dive on the inside of his teammate but lost the bike on the brakes. His fall knocked Melandri out of the race though he was able to re-mount and continue to finish in seventh. David Giugliano on the Ducati inherited second place as a consequence of the Aprilia's crash while third place went to Chaz Davies who won a last lap tussle with Alex Lowes and Leon Haslam.
Sykes now leads the championship with a solid 284 points with a comfortable 43 point lead over second place. The race for second is wide open with Guintoli, Baz and Rea separated by just six points.
World Supersport Championship
Championship leader Michael Van Der Mark extended his lead with a fantastic victory in the Supersport race. It too was a thoroughly entertaining race as Van Der Mark, Jack Kennedy and Kenan Sofuoglu fought for the top spot in one of the tightest battles this year. Van Der Mark managed to gap the other two riders on his Honda to take the win ahead of other Honda rider, Kennedy, who in turn finished ahead of Sofuoglu on the Mahi India Racing Kawasaki. Raffaele de Rosa, Kennedy's team mate rode well to finish in fourth while P J Jacobsen brought his Kawasaki over the line in fifth. Van Der Mark now leads the championship by a massive 53 points.
Team OD | 12 Feb 2019
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