With the Portimao track now soaking wet from the downpour that began in the World Supersport race, the second run- now shortened to eighteen laps because of the conditions - looked to be a completely different prospect from that which saw Tom Sykes dominate race one earlier in the day.
It was Rea – as he did in race one – who took the lead from the line, leaving Sykes almost literally in his wake from the rain, with the pack of Davies, Melandri and Guintoli in chase. With Rea and Sykes breaking away, it was this chasing group that provide the core of the action in the early laps, with the three exchanging places regularly for the first six circuits. As time moved on, it was the Aprilia’s of Melandri and Guintoli that began to take greater advantage of the weather however, with the Frenchman especially seeming to enjoy the levelling effects of the conditions.
Indeed, with both RSV4’s looking spritely in the wet, it was at the midpoint of the race where they both caught and swallowed up Tom Sykes, with the Ducati of Giugliano soon joining them.
So, with eight laps remaining, Rea began to see his lead reduced as the chasing black, silver and red pair gathered their pace. A five second lead became four; and then within the next two laps Melandri and Guintoli had shortened that gap to below 0.6 seconds and 0.9 seconds respectively. The chase was on.
Turn one – which had seen most of the significant passes during the earlier battle – became the focal point of the initial overtakes, but it was the warring Aprilias that provided the most dramatic moment of the race.
With Guintoli looking to gain second place in-front of the chasing Melandri, the Italian went to close the inside gap on his teammate. With this space ever-decreasing in size, Guintoli had nowhere to go and found himself making contact with the other RSV4 and both went crashing to the ground.
Now, with Rea having a considerable lead, the best of the action sat around the battle for the remaining podium places. Sykes – who looked increasingly uncomfortable in the wet conditions – slipped further and further down the grid, with Haslam, Lowes, Davies and Baz all gaining positions on him.
With two laps to go, the Ducati Superbike Team Panigale of Giugliano looked certain to take second place and his second podium of the year behind the Pata Honda of Jonathon Rea, so with the rain starting to abate, it was the clash for the third and final spot left up for grabs. Alex Lowes on his Voltcom Crescent Suzuki took full of advantage of his confidence in the conditions to begin a challenge for third, but it was another Ducati – that of Chas Davies – that rode through the flag for the final podium place.
The smiling Rea who hadn’t seen a podium since his double win, three months ago, in Imola, was visibly pleased, ‘It's nice to take a wet win, but I'd have prefered it in the dry. It's 25 points for me and the team though, so I'm really happy. I heard the rain coming sat in my motorhome and I started singing, getting a bit giddy becuase I knew I had a chance. I'm really happy'.
1 J. REA GBR PATA Honda World Superbike Honda CBR1000RR 1'55.703
2 D. GIUGLIANO ITA Ducati Superbike Team Ducati 1199 Panigale R +6.817
3 C. DAVIES GBR Ducati Superbike Team Ducati 1199 Panigale R +8.676
4 A. LOWES GBR Voltcom Crescent Suzuki Suzuki GSX-R1000 +9.740
5 L. HASLAM GBR PATA Honda World Superbike Honda CBR1000RR +11.289
6 L. BAZ FRA Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki ZX-10R +11.808
7 S. GUINTOLI FRA Aprilia Racing Team Aprilia RSV4 Factory +14.169
8 T. SYKES GBR Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki ZX-10R +17.164
9 E. LAVERTY IRL Voltcom Crescent Suzuki Suzuki GSX-R1000 +26.406
10 T. ELIAS ESP Red Devils Roma Aprilia RSV4 Factory +30.168
11 S. BARRIER FRA BMW Motorrad Italia SBK BMW S1000 RR EVO +41.820
12 S. MORAIS RSA IRON BRAIN Grillini Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-10R EVO +47.434
13 J. GUARNONI FRA MRS Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-10R EVO +50.045
14 B. STARING AUS IRON BRAIN Grillini Kawasaki Kawasaki ZX-10R +1'17.436
15 R. RUSSO ITA Team Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R EVO +1'24.500
16 A. ANDREOZZI ITA Team Pedercini Kawasaki ZX-10R +1'30.563
17 D. SALOM ESP Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki ZX-10R +18 1'34.242
18 N. CANEPA ITA Althea Racing Ducati 1199 Panigale R +1'34.647
19 G. RIZMAYER HUN BMW Team Toth BMW S1000 RR +1'47.422
RET M. MELANDRI ITA Aprilia Racing Team Aprilia RSV4 Factory 12 6 Laps 1'54.514 267,3 1'43.038 300,0 13 192 5
RET G. MAY USA Team Hero EBR EBR 1190 RX 6 12 Laps 2'04.121 235,8 1'46.971
RET A. YATES USA Team Hero EBR EBR 1190 RX 0 1'48.468
NS 27 56 P. SEBESTYEN HUN BMW Team Toth BMW S1000 RR EVO 1'48.734