Rea positive despite missing podium

Jonathan Rea has tyre problems to blame for missing the podium at Phillip Island, but is satisfied by the potential of the new Honda CBR1000RR.
Jonathan Rea says he has reason to be positive about the upcoming 2012 World Superbike Championship season, despite a relatively unfulfilling opening weekend at Phillip Island.

Embarking on his fourth season as a Honda WSBK rider, Rea showed flashes of speed in the run up to race day, but while good starts in both races had him chasing the leaders, tyre problems towards the end on each occasion would prevent him from reaching the podium.

Finishing seventh in race one after losing out in a drag to the line with Michel Fabrizio, Rea responded in race two to run second for much of the race, but a waning rear tyre would drop him into the clutches of Max Biaggi and then Tom Sykes, the latter compounding his day by also nudging ahead on the run to the chequered flag.

Nonetheless, Rea believes the tyre issues are more indicative of Phillip Island than the bike and is expecting the second round at Imola, where he was a winner in 2011, to be more favourable.

“We've still got a bagful of points to go on to Imola with but we wanted to be on the podium in both races,” he said. “I honestly feel like we got a bad tyre in race one and in race two we didn't want to run in the same situation, so we were thinking about changing the tyre, but all our logic and race runs throughout the weekend told us to keep this [harder] tyre in the heat.

“Directly, I had more grip – OK, the temperature was even hotter, which would go against our logic – but the tyre felt like it should feel and I was able to ride strong and consistent until probably five laps to go when durability fell off and I was going backwards. I felt fresh and strong in both races and the guys have worked well all weekend.

“We had a little crash on Saturday and the boys worked so good with the one-bike rule to get us back out there. You have to think that this circuit is a bit unique with the tyre character, how long you're on the side and the heat generated in the tyre.

“Now we move on to some tracks that are good for us and there's a lot of work to do back at base. The guys need to find some speed, so that's on the agenda; I've just done a de-brief and everything feels OK. I want to say thanks to everyone for all their help this weekend – it feels good to get to the start of the season fit and healthy and I'm looking forward to round two now.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Jonathan Rea, Race 1, Australian WSBK 2012
Jonathan Rea, Race 1, Australian WSBK 2012
Checa, Rea, Sykes, Biaggi, Australian WSBK 2012
Jonathan Rea, Race 1 Australian WSBK 2012
Jonathan Rea, Race 2 Australian WSBK 2012
Gino Rea, WSS Race, Misano 2017
Gino Rea, WSS Race, Misano WSBK 2017
Jonathan Rea , Melandri and Sykes, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Melandri and Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Melandri, Jonathan Rea and Sykes, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Melandri, Jonathan Rea and Sykes, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea bike, Akrapovic, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017
Jonathan Rea, Akrapovic, WSBK Race2, Misano 2017

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lorenzo lemioni

February 26, 2012 12:01 PM

@fuji----get off JRs case,you are a nasty piece of work. nobody else could ride that honda not even carlos checa.we'll see what happens when they get the bike sorted,don't forget the honda factory are involved now and most of the other teams had 2 days testing on monday and tuesday and honda were not there.AND if you can't say anything sensible just SHUT UP, we don't need bigots like you on here.


February 28, 2012 8:15 AM

It was obvious that Jonny was having major tyre problems just by watching him ride!! The back end of the bike was all over the place, he had to take corners a lot wider than he normally does and there was loads of smoke coming from his back wheel!! Normally, once Jonny gets to the front he does well, on this occasion it was plain to see he had massive problems just trying to keep his bike on the track!! On a positive note, look how many places Jonny made up at the start of each race after sitting in 8th place on the grid!!! He'll do for me !!!

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