Following a tough opening World Superbike race at Jerez, Alex Lowes decided not to ride in the second feature race because of injury, instead turning his attention to Portimao. 

Until racing began on Sunday, Lowes had been able to ride around the hand issues and even qualify second - one spot ahead of team-mate Jonathan Rea.

However, the Brit’s injury became apparent immediately as he dropped as far back as 11th place during the first few laps. 

Lowes was unable to ‘brake’ how he wanted whilst fighting other riders, which led to the somewhat inevitable decision to forgo race two and look ahead to the final round of this season’s only triple header in Portimao.

"It was obviously disappointing not to be able to have a better performance in the first race," said Lowes. 

"In practice I had been riding and adjusting my style to the strength I have in my hand. In race one when I was around the other bikes at the start I just could not brake as late as I wanted. 

"It was easy for people to attack and pass me. In the middle of the race, when I was by myself and just taking the lines that I wanted to take, the pace was OK. 

"But to battle and fight hard at the front, which is our target, it was not possible. There was a short turnaround for us today for the second race and with some information from the first race, we decided that the best thing to do was get a week’s rest before the next round in Portimao."

Lowes has since lost fourth place in the championship to Michael Rinaldi and rookie Andrea Locatelli who are tied on 227 points - Lowes sits sixth on 199.