Toprak Razgatlıoğlu fends off a strong Scott Redding to take his second win this weekend.
Toprak Razgatlıoğlu has once again been able to show his class and undeniable speed in Argentina taking his second victory of the weekend to continue his title charge which is becoming more of a ‘when’ than an ‘if’, it has been confirmed already that he mathematically cannot take the title later today in race two however he can take his first official triple.
The race was expected to be Razgatlıoğlu’s to lose right from the start and that’s exactly what it was as the riders headed down the slope into turn one, the Turkish rider getting the holeshot from second place on the grid, from here he would never relinquish the first position for longer than one corner despite the advances from Scott Redding in the latter part of the race. For title contender Jonathan Rea he was unable to get the temperature into his tyres early into the race and was forced to watch both Scott Redding and Toprak Razgatlıoğlu disappear ahead of him, settling for a lonely third place lapping within the limits of the Kawasaki.
From here on out it was a battle between the Ducati and the Yamaha, the Yamaha clearly far superior in every way from corner entry and exit to beating the Ducati in a straight line, it looked to be impenetrable especially with Razgatlıoğlu onboard. Redding looked to be closing up nicely early into the race but a mistake would force him wide and screw up his rhythm pushing him 0.700 seconds behind the race leader. The British rider knew he had the pace to win and was unable to show it in race one following a crash, slowly but surely he would eat into the gap between himself and Toprak eventually arriving within 0.200 seconds of the Yamaha, even setting a new lap record in the process.
Unfortunately for Redding by this point his time was almost up due to the lack of laps in the sprint race with only 10 on offer, it was the last lap and he had to strike if he wanted a chance at victory. Razgatlıoğlu made a rare mistake and Redding knew he had to strike, forcing his way past the Yamaha and compromising his exit in the process allowing the Yamaha man to regain the P1 position on the cutback. It was done, from here there was no way Redding could strike again and came home in a valiant second position behind the unbeatable Razgatlıoğlu, the pair split by just 0.046 seconds.
Finishing in an incredibly impressive P4 was Axel Bassani who finished as the top independent rider after a front row start, he battled with Michael van der Mark, Andrea Locatelli and Garrett Gerloff early on into the race looking like he was starting to struggle, however with every lap spun at the front of the grid he gains more and more experience and confidence which he put to good use today to dispose of all three riders and come home in fourth place ahead of Michael van der Mark, then Andrea Locatelli and Garrett Gerloff in P7.
Just behind these four were yesterdays podium man Michael Ruben Rinaldi, Alex Lowes who looked to struggle with his injury and Leon Haslam rounding out the top 10 just 0.515 seconds ahead of his teammate.
Full results –
Featured image – WorldSBK