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Alvaro Bautista Smashes It On New Ducati | Sport | WSBK

Alvaro Bautista (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) scored a stunning race victory in his first ever WorldSBK outing, after running away from the entire field to win by 14.983 seconds, having held a lead of over 16 seconds with one lap to go. He was the first WorldSBK rookie to win his first race since Max Biaggi on a Suzuki in 2007.

Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Alex Lowes (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) battled it out for the other podium places for some time, after long-time second place rider Leon Haslam (Kawasaki Racing Team) crashed out, then restarted to finish 15th.

Bautista, race1, Autsralian WorldSBK 2019

Marco Melandri (GRT Yamaha) came through from ninth place to third, and the leading Yamaha man, as Lowes ended up fourth, but only just, after a great last lap battle.

Michael van der Mark (Pata Yamaha WorldSBK Team) placed fifth, breaking away from a battle behind between Toprak Razgatlioglu (Turkish Puccetti Racing) and Tom Sykes (BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team). Razgatlioglu took sixth from Sykes, by 0.2 of a second.

Sandro Cortese (GRT Yamaha) was eighth in his WorldSBK debut, Michael Ruben Rinaldi (Barni Racing Team Ducati) ninth and Chaz Davies (Aruba.it Racing – Ducati) went from 16th on the grid to tenth.

Bautista, race1, Autsralian WorldSBK 2019

Leon Camier (Moriwaki-Althea Honda Racing Team) crashed out.

Now on Sunday there will be a sprint race at noon, then a second full-length race in the afternoon, again at 3pm.

Bautista, race1, Autsralian WorldSBK 2019

By Gordon Ritchie