Marco Melandri snatched victory from world champion Jonathan Rea by just 0.021 seconds in today’s second race to walk away with a double win from Phillip Island this weekend.
Rea looked to be in control as the race came to an end, but tremendous drive from Melandri out of the final turn saw him snatch victory from the jaws of defeat as the reigning champ was forced to settle for second and his worst season opener since joining Kawasaki in 2015.
Barni Ducati’s Xavi Fores led the race ahead of the compulsory pit stop window introduced after concerns of significant tyre degradation with the Spaniard going on to take his first dry WorldSBK podium in third. Chaz Davies, who had grappled with Fores for the early lead, dramatically fell out of the race after taking to the front after the pit window as he tucked the front at turn ten.
Tom Sykes was unable to repeat his podium performance from yesterday and crossed the line fourth ahead of the leading PATA Yamaha of Alex Lowes.
Leon Camier got things off to a strong start for Red Bull Honda to take sixth with Michael van der Mark crossing the line seventh.
Jordi Torres got the better of Loris Baz for eighth while rookie Toprak Razgatlioglu completed the top ten.
Race leader in the early laps, Eugene Laverty crashed out in the early stages but rejoined to finish 15th.
WORLDSBK PHILLIP ISLAND RACE 2
1. Marco Melandri - Aruba Ducati
2. Jonathan Rea - Kawasaki Racing +0.021
3. Xavi Fores - Barni Ducati +0.304
4. Tom Sykes - Kawasaki Racing +1.488
5. Alex Lowes - PATA Yamaha +2.474
6. Leon Camier - Red Bull Honda +2.745
7. Michael van der Mark - PATA Yamaha +3.098
8. Jordi Torres - MV Agusta +14.301
9. Loris Baz - Althea BMW +14.361
10. Toprak Razgatlioglu - Puccetti Kawasaki +19.785