Alvaro Bautista’s domination, after winning 11 races out of 11 races, is over after Italian GP as long as Jonathan Rea finally found the way to stop him and coming back to victory with two masterclass races on Saturday and Sunday.
The World Champion seemed to be really fast from Friday and everyone was expecting that at least we would have had a fight between the two title contenders, but surely it was not Jonathan’s idea by the way in which Kawasaki’s rider plan was of course to run away from his rivals.
Rea knew that Imola would have been a great opportunity for him to win his first race of the season and to keep his championship chances alive and gave everything over than pushing as mush as he could. The Briton was probably disappointed on not getting the pole position, who has gone to an incredible Chaz Davies, but he got what he wanted in Race 1.
Jonathan has been helped a bit also from the electronic problem of Chaz Davies who made him out of the race during the first lap, but after that he had a rhythm absolutely fantastic. 4-time world champion never went over the 1.46, with Alvaro Bautista who could not do anything about it. Rea’s domination on Saturday was impressive and after all he got the chequered flag with a big gap on all his rivals; it probably would have been over 10 seconds if he did not slow down during two last laps.
Sunday’s epilogue was similar: Kawasaki rider won superpole race after taking advantage from a mistake by Chaz Davies during the first lap, getting then the lead without conceding anything to anyone, despite the Briton from Ducati tried everything and pushed even over the limits.
The World Champion really needed a result like this and he was surely ready to race in the rainy Sunday as well; Rea had in his hands the chance to win all three races and he was conscious about that. At the same time, he probably was not the happiest person on earth after race cancellation decision.
Anyway, it was clear how Jonathan needed that wins, you could see in how he celebrated on track and after the chequered flag, but also in his words and how he spoke. Having the chance of being there and the possibility to be in front of him for the inteviews made me understand how hardly he was looking for it, just seeing his eyes and expressions.
Rea’s focus was extremely high, like he said: “After Assen I was visualizing me winning in Imola. I convinced myself I was gonna win. Every day, while training, in the gym”.
Jonathan’s confidence surely increased a lot after this Grand Prix and we will see what it is gonna happen from now on, even if we surely consider that good tracks for Bautista and Ducati will come again, starting maybe from Jerez.
For sure, Jonathan Rea will not give up and he is gonna gave everything.
I am convinced, after what I saw in Imola, that SBK show will be even more wonderful from now on. World Championship is not over, not yet. You better believe it is not.