WSB: Rea on top as Brit wildcards impress at Donington

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Jonathan Rea led the way on the opening day at Donington Park, outpacing team-mate Tom Sykes by 0.2 seconds but the long list of British wildcards also made their mark.

After heavy rainfall in the morning saw the track wet for the day’s first two sessions, riders had just FP3 to set a time in the dry to secure their place in the top ten and secure a path straight to tomorrow’s Superpole 1 session.

Rea’s time of 1’28.003 saw him comfortably ahead of Sykes with the Milwaukee Aprilia of Lorenzo Savadori rounding out the top three.

PATA Yamaha’s Alex Lowes was fourth ahead of the second Aprilia of Eugene Laverty and Michael van der Mark.

Then came the first of the BSB wildcards in the shape of Leon Haslam who ended the day seventh quickest for Puccetti Racing. Loris Baz was eighth at a track where he’s finished on the podium in the past, ahead of an impressive showing from BSB young gun Bradley Ray who earned a spot in SP1 on a his BSB-spec Buildbase Suzuki.

Marco Melandri was tenth in a tough day for Ducati which saw Chaz Davies crash out and sprain his ankle at Redgate in the final session – he’ll have to fight for his SP1 spot in the opening Superpole session after rounding out the day just 16th quickest. 

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Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

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