The official race report service of Kawasaki Racing Team.

27 Oktober 2023

Opening Day Of Action Underway For KRT Riders

Kawasaki Racing Team riders Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes took their first steps into the final round of the 2023 WorldSBK championship during the second free practice session of the Jerez race weekend.

The wet and heavily overcast morning FP1 session was an almost total wash-out, with only a few riders venturing onto the track as the asphalt was relatively cold and quite slippery.

Track conditions in FP1 - wet but not fully wet enough to evaluate full rain tyre settings - made it impossible to gain any meaningful information and thus Rea and Lowes waited to take part in the dry weather FP2 session in the afternoon.

The surface was still not fully at its best in FP2, despite the appearance of some welcome sunshine, a factor which contributed to a fall for Lowes after he found a patch of damp asphalt.

In the first day’s combined timesheets Rea was 13th and Lowes 16th overall.

Next up for both KRT riders is FP3 on Saturday, then the Tissot Superpole qualifying session will take place to determine the grid places for a 20-lap Race One, which is scheduled for a 14.00 CET start on Saturday 28 October.

Jonathan Rea, stated: “It was a disappointing day because this morning it was too wet for anything meaningful but not enough for full wet-weather testing, so we spent the first session in the pit box. In the afternoon I had no feeling from the bike straight away, no rear traction. We came in thinking we had a problem with the tyre, so we changed that, but we still had the same problem. The bike was not accelerating like normal, which is really strange. The guys are going to have a look now to understand it. I am not sure if it is the grip level of the circuit because the bike is the same as before, the set-up is the same, the electronics are the same - so there is work to do.”

Alex Lowes, stated: “It was a shame about the weather today. Even from the second session you can see by the lap times that the track was not ideal. It was easy to make a mistake on a little patch, as we had not ridden for a few weeks. The idea was to get out there and get plenty of laps in to get back up to speed, which obviously we didn’t do. But the bike felt good and hopefully tomorrow we will have more consistent conditions so that we can have a good race. There was not too much to be learned that session when the grip was low. There has been a lot of rain in Jerez recently, there is not much rubber on the circuit and we do not have any support classes here this weekend. So the track is obviously going to improve. My feeling was not that bad at all. It was a shame about the incident with the wet patch, but I know the bike works well here and I haven’t lost my enthusiasm for Saturday’s qualifying and the first race.”

Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) was 20th on day one and Oliver König (Orelac Racing Movisio Kawasaki) was 24th.

2023 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics

Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2023: Races 33, Wins 1, Podiums 17, Superpoles 3
Career Race Wins: 119 (104 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 262 (220 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 43 (39 for Kawasaki)

Alex Lowes:
2023: Races: 28, Wins 0, Podiums 1, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 34 (14 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 1 (0 for Kawasaki)

8 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Tom Sykes 2013, Rea 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
6 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020)
5 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019)

Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 178 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 541 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 108 – second overall