World Superbike's fastest sprint of the year was dry but with the traditional Phillip Island wind. Ten laps would determine the grid position for this afternoon's race and everyone was on the same soft tyres.
Alvaro Bautista led Toprak Razgatlioglu and Jonathan Rea into turn one but as Razgatlioglu took the lead, Dominique Aegerter
went into the Miller corner a bit hot and pushed himself and Rea wide, dropping Rea back to ninth place. At the start of lap two, Bautista took the lead and Alex Lowes took second place from Razgatlioglu with Aegerter setting the fastest lap, a 1'30.374, as he took fourth place from Michael Ruben Rinaldi. Rea remained in ninth place.
On lap four, Rinaldi passed Razgatlioglu to take third place and then, at Miller corner, snuck under Lowes on the exit, exploiting Lowes's defensive line. Alvaro Bautista held a lead of over a second and a half from his teammate as Razgatlioglu took third place from Lowes with Dominique Aegerter in striking distance.
At half race distance, five laps down, Bautista led Rinaldi by over a second with Razgatlioglu, Lowes and Locatelli under a second further back. Remy Gardner locked up his front brake into turn four and collected his teammate Dominique Aegerter ahead of him. Jonathan Rea was behind Philipp Oettl, Andrea Locatelli and fourth-placed Alex Lowes. Tom Sykes pulled into the pits to retire from seventeenth place.
With two laps left, Bautista was a second and a half clear of his teammate Rinaldi with Razgatlioglu under two seconds behind heading the battle for third place with Lowes, Locatelli, Oettl and Rea.
Locatelli and Lowes swapped places back and forth on the last lap, but at the flag, there were no changes in position.
Alvaro Bautista won by over two seconds from Michael Ruben Rinaldi. The last podium spot was claimed by Toprak Razgatlioglu, just over half a second off Rinaldi with Lowes, Locatelli, Oettl and Rea shortly after.
Bautista increased his championship lead and set himself up on pole position for race two.
|1||1||A. BAUTISTA||Ducati Panigale V4R|
|2||21||M. RINALDI||Ducati Panigale V4R||2.462|
|3||54||T. RAZGATLIOGLU||Yamaha YZF R1||0.598|
|4||22||A. LOWES||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||3.833|
|5||55||A. LOCATELLI||Yamaha YZF R1||0.060|
|6||5||P. OETTL||Ducati Panigale V4R||4.215|
|7||65||J. REA||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||4.952|
|8||7||I. LECUONA||Honda CBR1000 RR-R||7.140|
|9||47||A. BASSANI||Ducati Panigale V4R||11.295|
|10||60||M. VAN DER MARK||BMW M1000 RR||11.843|
|11||9||D. PETRUCCI||Ducati Panigale V4R||13.480|
|12||97||X. VIERGE||Honda CBR1000 RR-R||13.888|
|13||76||L. BAZ||BMW M1000 RR||14.413|
|14||45||S. REDDING||BMW M1000 RR||16.795|
|15||31||G. GERLOFF||BMW M1000 RR||17.891|
|16||34||L. BALDASSARRI||Yamaha YZF R1||26.122|
|17||52||O. KONIG||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||32.457|
|19||35||H. SYAHRIN||Honda CBR1000 RR-R||32.949|
|20||66||T. SYKES||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||3 Laps|
|RET||77||D. AEGERTER||Yamaha YZF R1||5|
|RET||87||R. GARDNER||Yamaha YZF R1||5|