Race two of World Superbike at Assen would be Jonathan Rea’s 200th start in the series and he would have to deal with a windy track.
With the reversed grid, Xavi Fores launched from pole position into the lead ahead of Eugene Laverty charging through from the second row in second place. Lorenzo Savadori from second was in third, but he very quickly fell prey to Tom Sykes and Jonathan Rea, Sykes getting an uncharacteristically fast start in spite of his dodgy stomach distracting him all weekend.
Eugene Laverty took the lead from Xavi Fores at turn five on lap two and later round the lap, Jonathan Rea chasséed through the Geert Timmer chicane complex past Tom Sykes to take third place from his teammate.
On lap three, moves were afoot and the reverse grid was once again shown not to make a real difference to the championship as Jonathan Rea passed Xavi Fores to take second place, followed by Tom Sykes squeezing past into third place, and as Chaz Davies and Marco Melandri closed in on Fores, Rea made his move on Eugene Laverty to take the lead off his Northern Irish neighbour and a couple of laps later, Sykes joined Rea at the front, leaving Laverty to deal with the hard-charging Davies who in turn had despatched Fores for his teammate to deal with.
Seven laps in, just under one third race distance, as Davies took third place into turn one, the race looked a little familiar, with Rea, Sykes and Davies sitting in the top three positions. Further back, however, things were a little different.
Michael van der Mark, starting in eleventh place, had gained on average one place a lap, closing gaps and passing riders like they were in a different race. At one third race distance, he was in fourth place, closing in on the wake of Chaz Davies and breaking free of Eugene Laverty in fifth place. A little later, Alex Lowes would make a similar progression, but his charge through the pack would only net him a nonetheless impressive fifth place from starting fifteenth on the grid.
Marco Melandri’s race, however, wouldn’t be as fortuitous. Attempting to take seventh place from Xavi Fores, Melandri took turn five too tight in an attempt to block Fores from passing back but he lost adhesion as he had too much speed for too little grip and he crashed out, ending his weekend.
Meanwhile, back at the front, Tom Sykes was closing on Jonathan Rea, reducing a lead of almost two seconds to nothing, capitalising on a slight error by Rea and the Kawasaki pair did their familiar synchronised swimming demonstration at the front of the race while Chaz Davies lost a few tenths of a second here and there. Michael van der Mark put on a valiant show for the home fans, but after a brutal tank slapper trying to close down Davies, he maintained a safe distance and eventually settled for fourth place.
Tom Sykes stayed behind his teammate, not looking for a way past as the pair managed their lead, until the last lap where he made several stabs at passing, but Jonathan Rea just had more grip and was able to thwart any efforts. On the last chicane, Sykes had one last try from behind and powered out from Rea’s clean air and charged to the flag alongside his teammate, but Rea had the drive as well and the pair finished within twenty five thousandths of a second. Chaz Davies took third place five seconds further back while Michael van der Mark pleased his fans in fourth place.
Jonathan Rea took another double and extended his lead at the top of the championship to sixty four points over Tom Sykes. Chaz Davies, twenty points further back took third place off Marco Melandri as a result of his teammate’s DNF.
In a damning indictment of the reverse grid, none of the riders who started in the top seven finished in the top seven.
|1||1||J. REA||Kawasaki ZX-10RR|
|2||66||T. SYKES||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||0.025|
|3||7||C. DAVIES||Ducati Panigale R||5.077|
|4||60||M. VAN DER MARK||Yamaha YZF R1||8.739|
|5||22||A. LOWES||Yamaha YZF R1||16.244|
|6||2||L. CAMIER||MV Agusta 1000 F4||17.899|
|7||81||J. TORRES||BMW S 1000 RR||19.026|
|8||50||E. LAVERTY||Aprilia RSV4 RF||19.184|
|9||69||N. HAYDEN||Honda CBR1000RR||21.475|
|10||6||S. BRADL||Honda CBR1000RR||24.693|
|11||40||R. RAMOS||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||26.751|
|12||36||L. MERCADO||Aprilia RSV4 RF||26.924|
|13||12||X. FORÉS||Ducati Panigale R||36.611|
|14||88||R. KRUMMENACHER||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||40.597|
|15||15||A. DE ANGELIS||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||49.140|
|16||86||A. BADOVINI||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||51.241|
|17||35||R. DE ROSA||BMW S 1000 RR||1'01.141|
|18||37||O. JEZEK||Kawasaki ZX-10RR||1'01.175|
|RET||32||L. SAVADORI||Aprilia RSV4 RF||10 Laps|
|RET||33||M. MELANDRI||Ducati Panigale R||13 Laps|
|RET||84||R. RUSSO||Yamaha YZF R1||13 Laps|