Toprak Razgatlioglu has won a drama-filled opening World Superbike race at Portimao as Jonathan Rea crashed from the lead. 

After a great launch, Razgatlioglu ran slightly wide on the exit of turn one which allowed title rival Rea into the lead. 

However, Razgatlioglu responded into turn five as he went down the inside of the Kawasaki rider.

Lap two saw huge contact between the pair as Razgatlioglu, who gave up the lead momentarily at turn 11 came back down the inside of the six-time champion which resulted in the Yamaha rider hitting the inside of Rea. 

The fierce battle continued on laps three and four as more contact was made, which gave Scott Redding the opportunity to slipstream both men into turn one and take a surprising lead. 

Razgatlioglu and Rea were not done exchanging places as moves from the latter came at turn 11 and 13. 

The last of those seemed to be Rea’s clearest chance to stay ahead for several corners and therefore attack Redding for the lead.

That's exactly what happened as Rea got past Redding at the same turn 13 on lap seven, however, the championship picture then took another incredible twist as Rea crashed at the final corner. 

It was a massive crash for the 34 year-old who was thankfully able to get back on his feet. 

Out front, Redding led for another five laps before Razgatlioglu made a brilliant move into turn one to regain what could be the most pivotal race lead of this season.

Razgatlioglu managed to put five tenths between him and Redding’s Ducati, while an enthralling battle for the final podium spot saw Alvaro Bautista lead Loris Baz, Michael Van Der Mark, Andrea Locatelli and Leon Haslam with 8 laps to go.

With just six laps to go, Baz gained third spot thanks to a late move into turn one on Bautista, while Locatelli clipped the back of Van Der Mark which led to both riders crashing. 

Just as Razgatlioglu looked to have pulled clear, Redding closed in on the Yamaha man as he seemed to have more rear tyre left. 

Redding came over the line in front of the 24 year-old with five to go, however, Razgatlioglu out-braked Redding to stay in front. 

The same move from Redding came at the beginning of lap 19, but Razgatlioglu once again got past on the brakes. 

Redding finally made the move stick into turn one at the start of the penultimate lap, but Razgatlioglu performed a great switch-back going towards turn two to come out ahead. 

Razgatlioglu held off Redding during the final lap to claim his 11th win of the season and create a 45 points gap between him and Rea. 

Baz managed to beat Bautista for third as the Spaniard crashed at the final corner, while Michael Rinaldi came home in fourth.

World Superbike Portimao, Portugal - Race Results (1)
PosRiderNatTeamTime
1Toprak RazgatliogluTURPATA Yamaha21 Laps
2Scott ReddingGBRAruba.It Ducati+0.691s
3Loris BazFRAGoEleven Ducati+10.628s
4Michael RinaldiITAAruba.It Ducati+12.901s
5Leon HaslamGBRTeam HRC+13.305s
6Garrett GerloffUSAGRT Yamaha+13.596s
7Axel BassaniITAMotocorsa Ducati+26.961s
8Leandro MercadoARGMIE Honda Racing+28.826s
9Eugene LavertyIRLMotorrad BMW WorldSBK Team+29.654s
10Christophe PonssonFRAGil Yamaha+39.061s
11Isaac VinalesSPAOrelac Racing Kawasaki+39.703s
12Samuele CavalieriSPABarni Ducati+40.669s
13Tito RabatITAKawasaki Puccetti+41.275s
14Kohta NozaneJPNGRT Yamaha+41.412s
15Jonas FolgerGERBenovo BMW+52.815s
16Loris CressonBELPedercini Kawasaki+52.894s
17Alvaro BautistaSPATeam HRCDNF
18Andrea LocatelliITAPATA YamahaDNF
19Michael Van Der MarkNEDMotorrad BMW WorldSBK TeamDNF
20Lachlan EpisAUSPedercini KawasakiDNF
21Gabrielle RuiuITAB-Max Racing TeamDNF
22Jonathan ReaGBRKawasaki Racing TeamDNF