A special celebratory livery was not enough a Jonathan Rea to stem the overwhelming power of Toprak Razgatlioglu in the first race of the weekend in Villicum, Argentina. The Turkish of Yamaha made the most of the crash of poleman Scott Redding at the first corner and flew alone to victory, crossing the line with more than five seconds ahead of the six-time world champion. The Kawasaki rider could only be satisfied with limiting the damage, coming under the checkered flag in second position. Certainly the fall of the PL2, which made the ‘Cannibal’ lose the entire session, influenced the final outcome of the race. Now the gap from Razgatlioglu in the standings is 29 points.
“I’m quite happy and have no regrets – Rea declared at the end of the race – I did my best. I struggled in some sections of the track, especially in the third sector I lost a lot of time while in the other parts of the track I had good sensations. We are changing the bike a lot. Unfortunately after the crash we didn’t have those important minutes in PL2 to understand the bike, the package and the tires but the news that was good enough for us is that we managed to make the SCX tire perform throughout the race. I was quite consistent, my pace was strong, I had no problems up front. A nice business card for tomorrow. We will try to take a few more steps to get a little closer “.