False neutrals hinder Rea in opening race

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Jonathan Rea’s progress in today’s opening World Superbike race at Donington Park was hindered after hitting a number of false neutrals while fighting with team-mate Tom Sykes and Ducati’s Davide Giugliano.

The reigning World Champion says he hit neutral five times during the race, twice causing him to run on at Goddards and as well as a further mistake at the Melbourne Loop, giving Sykes and Giugliano the ground they needed to build a gap at the front.

“My bike felt really good in the beginning of the race but near the end I started to lose some grip from the rear and suffered a little bit turning into the corners.

“I found neutral five times in the race and two times at the final corner I ran onto the gravel, and then had to turn around on the access road. Also in the Melbourne loop I used all of the track surface just to stay on the track. It was affecting my confidence a little bit so I started to roll of the gas and make sure I did not make any more mistakes.

“It is frustrating for me because at some points of the race I could see my pace was even faster than the front two guys. I was closing in on them after my first mistake. I consolidated my podium so I am happy for that but a bit frustrated that we could not fight at least Tom and Davide at the front at the end of the race.”

Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

Former sports reporter covering British Superbikes, World Superbikes and road racing