2021 Assen World Superbike Race Two Result: Controversy Doesn't Dampen Good Racing

With grey clouds over Assen, the track temperatures were much cooler. Jonathan Rea selected a harder tyre than he used in the other races this weekend, and there was a mild threat of rain.

Garrett Gerloff overcooked his launch and wiped out first-placed Toprak Razgatlioglu in turn one, recovering his bike as razgatlioglu's bike lay in the gravel. Behin d the crash, Andrea Locatelli took the lead, ahead of Michael Ruben Rinaldi, and Alex Lowes, after the crash, with positions jumbled after Gerloff's mistake. Race Direction immediately opened an investigation into Gerloff's crashing into Razgatlioglu.

After a lap, Andrea Locatelli led Michael Ruben Rinaldi, Alex Lowes, Scott Redding and Jonathan Rea who had to work his way past Tom Sykes and Michael Van der Mark. Locatelli set the fastest lap on lap two, using the SCX tyre, as the leading nine riders were all in touch. Scott Redding and Jonathan Rea passed a surprised Alex Lowes. 

Lap three was another fastest lap for Andrea Locatelli, leading Rinaldi by a second with Rea and Redding behind him, Rea passing Redding in the Geert Timmer chicane. Jonathan Rea closed on Michael Ruben Rinaldi and passed him on turn eight of lap four and set the fastest lap, one thousandth of a second quicker than Locatelli. 

Garrett Gerloff was handed out a ride-through penalty, as he was in ninth place. Razgatlioglu did not restart after the crash.

Andrea Locatelli stretched out his lead to over a second from Jonathan Rea, but as Rea escaped the fight between Rinaldi and Redding, he started closing the gap, setting the fastest lap on the way. Into turn one of lap seven, Scott Redding slid his rear as he locked up everything to outbreak Michael Ruben Rinaldi, and he took third place a second behind Jonathan Rea. 

At the start of lap eight, it looked like a 2020 World Supersport race, with Andrea Locatelli almost a second in the lead. Jonathan Rea in second had a second lead over Scott Redding who led the Ducatis of Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Chaz Davies. Davies caught Rinaldi and was looking for a way past, a few hundredths of a seconds a lap quicker than Rinaldi. Michael van der Mark was in sixth place with Alvaro Bautista and Alex Lowes fighting behind him when he got a track limits warning. 

By lap ten, Jonathan Rea had closed to within half a second of Andrea Locatelli with Scott Redding nearly two seconds behind. Chaz Davies took a tight line into De Strubben and prised his way under Rinaldi before starting his campaign to catch Scott Redding. Rea started to look for a way past Locatelli. 

Heading into lap twelve, slingshotting out of the Ramshoek corner to take the lead in the Geert Timmer chicane, building up the pass over four corners, Jonathan Rea hurled his Kawasaki into the chicane ahead of Locatelli's Yamaha and he took the lead and tried to escape at the lead. Locatelli kept up with Jonathan Rea throughout the lap.

Two thirds of the way through the race, Andrea Locatelli held on to the leader Jonathan Rea, with Scott Redding two seconds behind. Chaz Davies remained over a second behind Redding but was over two seconds free of Michael Ruben Rinaldi who now had Alvaro Bautista on his tail.  Garrett Gerloff crashed out, trying to recover a point or two after his ride through penalty, ending what could be a pivotal career moment, lucky to have re-signed with Yamaha before this weekend.

Alvaro Bautista took advantage of Michael Ruben Rinaldi's wide line through turn five to cut under him and take fifth place from him. Alex Lowes started to look past Rinaldi, immediately on his tail. 

Jonathan Rea kept up his pace and Andrea Locatelli struggled to keep up, dropping a few tenths as Scott Redding matched Rea's pace and closed in to under two seconds while going half a second a lap faster. Locatelli picked up his pace a little and stemmed the bleeding, but Redding still managed to close, ending lap eighteen of twenty one within a second of second place. 

With three laps left, Jonathan Rea was two seconds clear of Andrea Locatelli, with Scott Redding closing to within Locatelli's wake. Chaz Davies held a safe fourth place, but Alvaro Bautista was doing his best to put Davies's fourth place in jeopardy. 

Scott Redding went round the outside of a couple of fast corners, and left Locatelli no room to get back on his spent tyres. Locatelli tried to strike back, but Redding had plenty of grip and drive and held second place. Tom Sykes crashed behind a three-way fight between Michael van der Mark, Alex Lowes and Michael Ruben Rinaldi for sixth place. Sykes recovered his BMW and resumed racing in fifteenth place.

As the flag came out, Jonathan Rea won his third race of the weekend, ahead of Scott Redding and an impressive Andrea Locatelli who earned the podium he should have achieved this morning. Chaz Davies held onto fourth place, just ahead of Alvaro Bautista. Local hero Michael van der Mark took sixth place, fighting Alex Lowes and Michael Ruben Rinaldi for the honour. 

Jonathan Rea played to the crowd, throwing his used sliders to the jubilant crowd, and he extended his championship lead, with Toprak Razgatlioglu's DNF hurting his challenge, to thirty seven points. Scott Redding closed the gap to Razgatlioglu to forty four points while Garrett Gerloff lost fifth place to Michael Ruben Rinaldi, six points the deficit. 

Results:

Pos No. Rider Bike Gap
1 1 J. REA Kawasaki ZX-10RR  
2 45 S. REDDING Ducati Panigale V4 R 1.605
3 55 A. LOCATELLI Yamaha YZF R1 1.826
4 7 C. DAVIES Ducati Panigale V4 R 8.695
5 19 A. BAUTISTA Honda CBR1000 RR-R 9.584
6 60 M. VAN DER MARK BMW M 1000 RR 12.691
7 22 A. LOWES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 12.992
8 21 M. RINALDI Ducati Panigale V4 R 0.760
9 47 A. BASSANI Ducati Panigale V4 R 19.087
10 91 L. HASLAM Honda CBR1000 RR-R 19.629
11 53 T. RABAT Ducati Panigale V4 R 20.974
12 3 K. NOZANE Yamaha YZF R1 34.615
13 36 L. MERCADO Honda CBR1000 RR-R 35.640
14 32 I. VINALES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 38.917
15 66 T. SYKES BMW M 1000 RR 47.840
16 9 A. MANTOVANI Kawasaki ZX-10RR 56.387
17 84 L. CRESSON Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'09.598
RET 31 G. GERLOFF Yamaha YZF R1 12
RET 54 T. RAZGATLIOGLU Yamaha YZF R1  
Round Number: 
5
2021
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Comments

If  Garrett hadn't signed his new contract recently, he may not have been given the opportunity given today's performance. He's been racing long enough to know you don't win a race at turn one on the first lap. He has the talent to be a champion but he needs to be a little more patient.

He's taken out the first and second guys in the championship so far, I guess Redding is next. I've got to wonder how iron-clad his contract extension is ... Agreed he's got talent, but he continues to act like an idiot on track.

He took out Rinaldi at Estoril aswell, he's a loose unit alright.

Hope he can find a way to properly display his talent.  Thus far I don't really understand the hype, his performance is not a patch on what Spies did for example.  Going to MotoGP too soon is not necessarily a good career move.

I would have loved to be a fly on the Yamaha wall after that race though...

Congratulations Andrea Locatelli!

Yamaha not so much. JR1 rides into the sunset

GG you are on the superbike R1. The M1 MotoGp bike has the carbon brakes, don't confuse the two. Braking points are different.

It was a better weekend for Ducati, particularly Chaz Davies & Scott Redding, about time.

That said, the R1 looks great this wknd. Toprak is really impressing. That 20 points was expensive. 

Hats off to Rea, he is so solid and smooth, consistent. You can contrast other riders around him. Redding and the Duc of course make NOTHING look easy or smooth. But even Toprak and the Yam look a touch ragged matching pace with Rea. He deserves praise! 

He is also a great guy, the only one of the podium finishers thinking of the rider that was down in the post race interview.

Gerloffs repeatedly failed over ambitious moves must surely have earned him a proper penalty? Race ban or similar?

His passing technique doesn't require work, it requires a total rebuild. Saying that, you can slow em down - but you cannot speed em up.

Tricky for the team, wonder if Toprak is thinking about a wall? 

They are In Different teams. Locatelli is Topraks teammate. 

Not entirely sure this is a bad sign. Kid raced clean in the Raineyclub. Very hungry! He came out upright diving in T1. Not excusing it, kid needs a thump on the head. But this kid has a blazing kiln. 

It was said by someone I know today "you HAVE to watch this recent lap of Laguna Seca. Indy Car test, open wheel cars haven't been here for almost 20 yrs, look how FAST this lap is!"

Watched it. Flacid as salt peter. Four wheels have no soul, this is shite. Cars are just transportation. You don't have to have ridden a good track on a bike to know, just following the racing makes it obvious, right? Watching this is inherently sad and underwhelming. Lean or something! I want my MotoGP. Is it Aug yet?! Please folks, don't turn to auto racing. Is there a support group?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Zv-Av2ysaz0 

That's pretty cool, thanks Larry! As a child, we watched classic cars at Laguna with Dad. First car was a 60's Triumph restoration. It ALL went poof never to be found again when bikes happened! 

 

There's actually a bit of bike content; at about 9.35 in there, I'm pretty sure Eddie Lawson is in the background for a second!

It seems GG's issues are always under braking. With the Rea incident, his bike gets out of shape with the rear stepping out and pointing him too much to the inside. If your rear steps out and points you to the inside there isnt much you can really do to save it. Stand it up and your into the next bike anyway. There is nothing wrong with ambitious moves, people are amazed when they work (See Rossi Corkscrew pass). He has the pace to run with the front guys, and it seems very apparant that you have to be able to go with Rea early to have any chance of a win.  Its a shame it keeps happening.

Theres been plenty of examples of guys redeeming themselves over time. I hope whatever stern chat Yamaha has most likely had with him doesnt equate to a slower Gerloff. 

 He had the speed and went for it. You gotta load that Pirelli or it will get out of shape just like his bike did.  Other than JR he is the only guy pushing to go. It is racing. thngs happen. GG went from nowhere last year to running at the front. IF this was a Brit we would have the second coming of Jesus.  Your delsuinal if you think this cost Toprak the championsonship.... no one is beating Rea.

> Your delsuinal if you think this cost Toprak the championsonship.... no one is beating Rea.

Let's revisit this at the end of the year. If Rea wins by fewer than 30 points, Gerloff played a part.

Yamaha and Toprak look to be the real deal right now, and still early in trajectory. We may have thought first half season of the V4 Duc debut that Rea/Kawi had been matched? Not to be. This next one looks promising and interesting. 

Not popular to say right now of course, but more is likely to come from Gerloff as he emerges from a "gold helmet" transition period. 

Anyone hear any substance in the Petronas Yamaha rider search including not only Toprak, but Rea? Looks like both have had some consideration. Timing for Toprak looks good to me. Morbidelli to Blue. One WSBK top contender to Aqua?

When Rea was questioned about rumour he said journos probably new about it as him! If he does go to Petronas on a full factory bike the Kawasaki becomes hottest ride in town for 2022 - from current WSBK and Motogp paddock. Redding's contract is up at end of season and I am sure Ducati are disappointed that he is a distant 3rd in standings. Kawasaki have already resigned Lowes which says something.

Could be silly season rumours but i suspect Rea wants to do more than simply win more WSBK titles and he aint got much more time left to do it.

It is very rare to see Jonathan Rea have one crash in a season. Two in one race must be the Most ever. Jonathan "Dusty" Rea.

Delusional, maybe? I do think it is possible for someone to beat JR1 in the championship. Yes I love my delusions.

Thanks for the link Shrink. This is the full, action packed, race.

https://www.worldsbk.com/en/videos/2021/2021%20WorldSBK%20Most%20RACE%20...

Congratulations Toprak! Second again SR45.

Toprak is discovering that like Redding - Rea is metronomic - all he will do is to win races/settle for podiums and watch whilst his competitors continue to be inconsistent. Look at Redding - gets a second and what about the other results - net effect - Rea opens up a bigger lead.

As a Brit - Gerloff is a great find - we need new talent who can mix it up - just need to calm him down before something nasty happens. I am sure Yamaha will have had words with him - Gerloff looked pretty upset with actions.

Exactly which field does he belong in after a Podium in his first trip to Donnington and consistant top privateer? 

Given the potential for disaster every time riders line up on the grid, I, for one, am thankful that these kind of T1 events (and worse) are not more common place. If the riders paraded around the circuit, tip-toeing politely, the racing would be a snoozefest. Gerloff's Yamaha looked slightly unsettled as he slammed on the binders. Yeah, maybe he pushed a bit too hard. Yeah, he has made the same mistake before. Maybe he will gain something from this dark moment in his career. He shined when he subbed for Rossi for a day. He was pushing hard.

For a peek inside the mind of Livio Suppo, check out the Moody interview at the-race: https://the-race.com/motogp/podcast-the-man-who-led-ducati-and-honda-to-...

Fascinating behind the scenes commentary about his career. His words paint a picture that might cause a guy to conclude that Dovizioso's current position at Aprilia is where he can presently help a factory the most (which Motoshrink has opined for some time now). And there are some heartfelt words for the late Nicky Hayden. Worth a listen during this long break. 

Thanks for the openmindedness in allowing subscribers to post outside links on your site, Mr. Emmett. And yes, it's saddenning that investigative journalism is dwindling due to cost constraints. 

Late to the party here, but after watching GG's botched attempt to pass 54 I realized I had seen Marquez do the same many times, to great acclaim, often leading to a win.

Dumb, yes, and probably deserving a penalty. And I agree that GG appears to be a slow learner. But maybe next time Toprak won't be so innocently amazed to have a competitor dive inside him. It's naive for any racer to assume they own the inside of the first corner of any race.