Davies doubles up at Jerez
Chaz Davies has stormed to a dominant victory in race one at Jerez but it wasn't enough to stop Kawasaki wrapping up the manufacturers' world title as Tom Sykes eats into Jonathan Rea's riders' championship lead. In a frantic start Rea looked initially to grab the holeshot from pole-sitter Sykes while Davies elbowed into third having started at the back of the second row from a tricky qualifying.
As the front three found their rhythm Davies reeled in Rea and Sykes to move into the lead in the opening stages, while further back Pata Yamaha's Alex Lowes tumbled out of fourth place. Davies resisted early pressure from Sykes for the lead and eventually build a time gap at the front while Rea slipped off the tail of the front two. As race pace told the Aruba.it Racing Ducati rider pulled away to increase his lead to four seconds with four laps remaining before easing off to take an eighth race win of the season and his first at Jerez.
Despite the factory Ducati team's delight, with Sykes in second and Rea in third it was enough for Kawasaki to secure the manufacturer's crown with three races to spare. Sykes secured a comfortable second to reduce the championship deficit to 44 points as Rea had to remain content with the final step on the rostrum but his first podium at Jerez. Further back Honda's Nicky Hayden held off a late race charge by team-mate Michael van der Mark to take fourth as the sole remaining Pata Yamaha of Sylvain Guintoli had a lonely race in sixth place.
Leon Camier recovered from a tricky start to his Jerez race weekend on the MV Agusta to take seventh place in front of the Althea BMW duo of Jordi Torres and Markus Reiterberger as Milwaukee BMW's Josh Brookes claimed a rare top ten finish. Alex de Angelis took 11th for IodaRacing Aprilia ahead of Roman Ramos as Lorenzo Savadori, Anthony West and Peter Sebestyen completed the points-paying positions.
Chaz Davies has dominated to a fourth consecutive win in World Superbikes as Tom Sykes forced the title race into the final round at Qatar by holding on for third place just behind Jonathan Rea. In a repeat of race one at Jerez, Davies stormed from sixth on the grid and into the lead by the end of the first lap to steadily build a comfortable lead.
Having built a seven second advantage with two laps to go, the Aruba.it Racing Ducati rider eased to his ninth win of the year, to equal Rea's win tally in 2016, as the title drama unfolded behind him. Over the opening 10 laps Rea kept pace with Sykes before bashing his Kawasaki team-mate up the inside at turn eight on lap 11 to give himself a stride towards claiming the title in Spain.
Rea held station ahead of Sykes which brought Honda's Nicky Hayden into play which heightened the tension over the final laps because if Sykes finished fourth with Rea in second he would have wrapped up the title. However, the Yorkshire rider held his nerve to keep clear of Hayden to secure the final step of the podium. With Rea reversing the race one result against his team-mate he takes a 48-point lead into the final round with only a maximum of 50 points left to score.
With Hayden narrowly missing out on the podium he was forced to settle for fourth place but comfortably ahead of Pata Yamaha's Sylvain Guintoli. The second Honda of Michael van der Mark stayed clear of Alex Lowes after the British rider faded from fourth to seventh, as Jordi Torres continued to produce consistent results on the Althea BMW in eighth. Anthony West grabbed an impressive result in fourth for Pedercini Racing Kawasaki as Lorenzo Savadori recovered from a tricky start to round out the top ten.
Roman Ramos placed his GO Eleven Kawasaki in 11th ahead of Milwaukee BMW's Josh Brookes as Davide Giugliano, Markus Reiterberger and Gianluca Vizziello rounded out the points places, as Leon Camier on the MV Agusta crashed out on lap three.