25 April 2010
Rea claims outstanding Assen double
Rea takes his first-ever WSBK double on Ten Kate Racing's home soil, as British riders again fill out the podium
Jonathan Rea has taken a second World Superbike win of the day after prevailing over a number of riders in one of the tightest, most competitive races seen in some years at Assen.
A mesmerising race that saw eight riders and six different manufacturers vying for victory at times, there was often very little to choose between Rea, Troy Corser, Leon Haslam, Leon Camier and James Toseland as they diced up front.
Much like the first race, however, it would take a daring charge by a rival, in this case Haslam, during closing stages to prompt a response from Rea, the Northern Irishman snatching the lead back at the end of lap 15 before reeling off a series of fast times to gap Haslam by the chequered flag.
Once again, Rea was certainly made to work hard though as he was beaten into the opening bend by Corser's BMW, but while he'd grab the initiative back by the end of the first lap – with an identical move to the one that won him the earlier race - the Australian struck back on lap four to move ahead again.
Behind the top two, Haslam ran third, the Suzuki rider determined to make amends for the first race when his pace was blunted by a slow puncture, while Camier would settle into fourth.
Behind them, Toseland had hauled himself up to sixth, behind Jakub Smrz, while Max Biaggi, Shane Byrne, Carlos Checa and Cal Crutchlow kept a watching brief just behind.
Back at the front, Corser, Rea and now Haslam came into close contact as they disputed the lead once more, but while both Rea and Haslam would get the better of Corser on lap five, the Australian would find himself back ahead for the third time by lap ten.
Indeed, the close proximity of the riders would also see Rea bundled down to fourth at one stage when a bold pass by Haslam at the final corner chicane gave Camier the momentum to drag himself up to third. However, when Camier subsequently ran wide out of turn one, Rea and Toseland slipped back in front, the pair lucky not to come together in the process.
Haslam, meanwhile, was straight onto the back of Corser, producing another of his trademark moves through the final corner chicane to move into the lead for the first time. Corser's attempts to fight back would see the pair swap positions again, but when Haslam dipped beneath the BMW soon after, he would drag Rea through too.
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