2021 Jerez World Superbike Superpole Result: Unexpected Finish

World Superbike qualifying was fifteen minutes with a few riders opting for opening on race tyres for a three session strategy. 

After one lap, Alex Lowes led Jonathan Rea with a 1'38.730 as the teammates rode in formation half a lap after the rest of the grid. After a quick pit stop, a couple of two-stop riders headed straight out on the qualifying tyres after a sighting lap on a race tyre, while most riders settled in for a cup of tea on their only stop. Scott Redding was third quickest after his lonely opening lap, electing to wait until the track was clear before heading out. 

At the five minute remaining mark. Riders started to peel out of the pits. Michael Ruben Rinaldi snuck up to third place and putted in as the Kawasakis set red sectors, with the injured Alex Lowes holding off Jonathan Rea with a 1'38.539 as the pair improved on their times. 

As the session ticked down, Toprak Razgatlioglu languished in thirteenth place only to pull a fast lap out of his hat to set a 1'38.512 for pole position, all of it made up in the final sector. 

Toprak Razgatlioglu headed the front row, with Alex Lowes, nursing a hand injury from last weekend, and Jonathan Rea alongside him, while the Ducatis of Scott Redding and Michael Ruben Rinaldi were joined by Andrea Locatelli on the second row. Loris Baz, on Chaz Davies's Ducati, was seventh quickest ahead of the Hondas of Leon Haslam and Alvaro Bautista. 

Results:

Pos No. Rider Bike Time Gap Speed
1 54 T. RAZGATLIOGLU Yamaha YZF R1 1'38.512   268,7
2 22 A. LOWES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'38.539 0.027 268,0
3 1 J. REA Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'38.614 0.102 265,4
4 45 S. REDDING Ducati Panigale V4 R 1'38.661 0.149 271,4
5 21 M. RINALDI Ducati Panigale V4 R 1'38.860 0.348 271,4
6 55 A. LOCATELLI Yamaha YZF R1 1'39.056 0.544 268,7
7 11 L. BAZ Ducati Panigale V4 R 1'39.322 0.810 270,0
8 91 L. HASLAM Honda CBR1000 RR-R 1'39.423 0.911 268,0
9 19 A. BAUTISTA Honda CBR1000 RR-R 1'39.609 1.097 272,7
10 31 G. GERLOFF Yamaha YZF R1 1'39.747 1.235 263,4
11 36 L. MERCADO Honda CBR1000 RR-R 1'40.023 1.511 267,3
12 47 A. BASSANI Ducati Panigale V4 R 1'40.081 1.569 267,3
13 60 M. VAN DER MARK BMW M 1000 RR 1'40.092 1.580 266,0
14 94 J. FOLGER BMW M 1000 RR 1'40.121 1.609 264,7
15 50 E. LAVERTY BMW M 1000 RR 1'40.206 1.694 268,7
16 32 I. VINALES Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'40.273 1.761 264,1
17 3 K. NOZANE Yamaha YZF R1 1'40.367 1.855 266,7
18 76 S. CAVALIERI Ducati Panigale V4 R 1'40.433 1.921 269,3
19 17 M. FRITZ Yamaha YZF R1 1'40.490 1.978 259,6
20 9 A. MANTOVANI Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'40.795 2.283 263,4
21 23 C. PONSSON Yamaha YZF R1 1'41.030 2.518 262,8
22 84 L. CRESSON Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'41.255 2.743 259,6
23 83 L. EPIS Kawasaki ZX-10RR 1'42.626 4.114 255,3
Round Number: 
10
2021
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Comments

Last week it was Miller helping Bagnaia by making life hard for Quarararo. This week, although Kawasaki team's tactics in Superpole didn't entirely work to plan, it seems to me their intention couldn't have been clearer. Lowes has been lined up to lay down his life - metaphorically - in order to delay Toprak and give Rea a clear run. I don't approve of Kawasaki ratting on Toprak after the last race, but team tactics are fine by me as long as they are implemented fairly. Should make for a fun race.