Jonathan Rea says rather than tweaking with race formats and rules fresh emphasis must be placed on pushing manufacturers to invest more in the World Superbike championship in order to close the performance deficit.

The two-time World Superbike champion has continued his domination in the series this season having appeared on every podium in 2017 except one, Donington Park race one, when he suffered a rear tyre blowout while leading the closing stages.

With a 70-point lead in the riders’ championship with four rounds remaining, it has been another year controlled by the factory Kawasaki and Ducati teams which has sparked fears for the series leading to rule changes to shake things up.

Rea feels the reversed grid for race two has failed to deliver to expectations, with the top three from race one frequently returning to the front in the opening laps, and it is up to Ducati’s and Kawasaki’s manufacturer rivals to step up its efforts in the series to close the performance deficit.

“My opinion is instead of changing something every year and make the bike a real stock bike it is better to encourage other manufacturers to spend more money on development for World Superbike,” Rea said at the British MotoGP. “There is no doubt Kawasaki and Ducati are taking the championship seriously and the others are not as much.

“It would be interesting to ask guys who went to Suzuka like Alex Lowes and Michael van der Mark how their Yamaha in Suzuka and Yamaha in World Superbikes compare.”

“Something needs to happen. I’m not the clever guy that decides it. Whether we turn up on a Superbike or a fully-open rule production bike. Whatever happens I will be there racing because make no mistake the guys at the front like Chaz Davies, Marco Melandri and Tom Sykes are going really fast. The only problem I see is the gap to the rest.”

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