EWC: Xavi Fores joins Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes in Kawasaki's Suzuka 8-Hour line-up
Kawasaki have revealed that Jonathan Rea will be joined by his new World Superbike teammate Alex Lowes and Xavi Fores at this year's Suzuka 8-Hour event.
Rea led Kawasaki to their first Suzuka 8-Hour victory since 1993 last year, albeit in dramatic circumstances. With only a few minutes remaining on the clock, Rea crashed on oil dropped on the circuit by another bike.
The race was red flagged moments later and Yamaha, consisting of Lowes, Michael van der Mark and Katsuyuki Nakagsuga, were awarded victory. However, Kawasaki would appeal to race direction and their wish was granted. Rea, Leon Haslam and Toprak Razgatlioglu were named as winners based on countback to the last completed lap before the red flag.
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Having swapped Yamaha for Kawasaki in WSB, Lowes will now line-up in green at the famous endurance race. Meanwhile, Fores joins the team after becoming Razgatlioglu's replacement at Puccetti Kawasaki in WSB. The new members of the team have been tweeting about their excitement.
"Fantastic event, Lowes commented. "Looking forward to joining JR and Xavi for the 2020 Suzuka 8 hours. It's such a special race and I can't wait to catch up with all the Japanese fans in July!"
Lowes currently leads the WSB championship after the opening round at Phillip Island. The Brit, who has now won on Yamaha and Kawasaki machinery, is a three-time winner of the Suzuka 8-Hour.
"Very happy to announce I will join this legendary race with two very strong riders in Alex Lowes and Jonathan Rea," Fores said. "Thank you to Kawasaki and Peccetti Racing for bringing me this opportunity. See you all there!"
This year's Suzuka 8-Hour event is due to take place on July 16-19, however due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic this could still change. Multiple sporting events have either been postponed or cancelled in recent weeks, including the Tokyo Olympics which was pushed back until 2021.