Twenty laps of Jerez to go and we will know if the title fight is carried on to Qatar.
Tom Sykes led the Ducatis of Chaz Davies and Davide Giugliano, Davies charging through from sixth on the grid again, but it didn't take long for Rea and Nicky Hayden to pass Giugliano and as Giugliano dropped back, his teammate went forwards with Davies taking the lead before the first lap was done. The next lap, Davies set the fastest lap and secured the Pirelli best lap award with his ninth of the year.
Four laps in and Davies already had a gap from the title fight behind him, Sykes and Rea locked together with over a second behind them to Nicky Hayden. Hayden was almost two seconds clear of the fight for fifth place between Alex Lowes, Sylvain Guintoli and Xavi Fores.
As Davies ran away at the front, Sykes held off Rea lap after lap but on the tenth lap, halfway through the race, Rea made a move, on Sykes but Sykes held his line and blocked the pass. Sykes carried a little too much speed out of the clash and left a gap for Rea to resume the contretemps in green. Rea shovelled under Sykes and passed him through a very tight gap and took second place at Pons corner. Chaz Davies was over three seconds in front and Rea knew he couldn't catch him.
Whether deliberately or if he was struggling a little, Rea couldn't escape Sykes and had to thwart his constant passing attempts, dropping the pace enough for Nicky Hayden to close the gap by a tenth a lap.
Further back, Michael van der Mark had worked his way back from eleventh place and eventually caught and passed Alex Lowes for sixth place a second back from Sylvain Guintoli but neither of them would get close enough to a rejuvenated Hayden who saw a chance to fight for the podium. If Hayden passed Sykes, Rea would win the title.
With three laps to go, Nicky Hayden had caught the Kawasakis, but couldn't get close enough to challenge Tom Sykes for third. Jonathan Rea still had enough tyre and gumption to fend off Sykes while Sykes had to make sure Hayden didn't give Rea the title.
Chaz Davies won his ninth race of the year, equalling Jonathan Rea's tally, spoiling Rea's hopes of carrying the title away this weekend but he was now mathematically out of contention for the championship, even if he is only nineteen points off Tom Sykes in second.
Jonathan Rea in second place leaves Jerez with the same forty-eight point lead from Tom Sykes that he came in with, meaning the title fight will go to the last round of the year.
Another fourth place for Nicky Hayden puts him twenty seven points behind his teammate Michael van der Mark, sixth today and fourth in the championship, and thirty one points clear of the injured Davide Giugliano who could only get three points today. Sylvain Guintoli's fifth place put him within four points of his teammate Alex Lowes.
|1||7||C. DAVIES||Ducati Panigale R|
|2||1||J. REA||Kawasaki ZX-10R||5.893|
|3||66||T. SYKES||Kawasaki ZX-10R||6.030|
|4||69||N. HAYDEN||Honda CBR1000RR SP||6.750|
|5||50||S. GUINTOLI||Yamaha YZF R1||10.762|
|6||60||M. VAN DER MARK||Honda CBR1000RR SP||11.310|
|7||22||A. LOWES||Yamaha YZF R1||16.413|
|8||81||J. TORRES||BMW S1000 RR||19.232|
|9||13||A. WEST||Kawasaki ZX-10R||24.095|
|10||32||L. SAVADORI||Aprilia RSV4 RF||25.379|
|11||40||R. RAMOS||Kawasaki ZX-10R||26.036|
|12||25||J. BROOKES||BMW S1000 RR||29.230|
|13||34||D. GIUGLIANO||Ducati Panigale R||34.879|
|14||21||M. REITERBERGER||BMW S1000 RR||49.708|
|15||4||G. VIZZIELLO||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1'02.245|
|16||99||L. SCASSA||Ducati Panigale R||1'08.295|
|17||94||M. LUSSIANA||BMW S1000 RR||1'20.252|
|18||9||D. SCHMITTER||Kawasaki ZX-10R||1'33.859|
|19||82||K. PESEK||Yamaha YZF R1||1'33.965|
|RET||12||X. FORÉS||Ducati Panigale R||12 Laps|
|RET||11||S. AL SULAITI||Kawasaki ZX-10R||12 Laps|
|RET||15||A. DE ANGELIS||Aprilia RSV4 RF||17 Laps|
|RET||2||L. CAMIER||MV Agusta 1000 F4||18 Laps|
|RET||56||P. SEBESTYÉN||Yamaha YZF R1|