"Bad luck" – Razgatlioglu and Lowes assess costly Race 2 clash

Sunday, 26 February 2023 06:04 GMT

The pair came together at Turn 4 on Lap 17 which ended their race, but both riders were adamant that no one was to blame

Race 2 in the MOTUL FIM Superbike World Championship was a dramatic affair for Toprak Razgatlioglu (Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK) and Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) after the pair came together at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit. The clash at Turn 4 meant they both retired from the race during the Grand Ridge Brewery Australian Round and scored no points after being involved in a fierce battle for fourth place throughout the 22 laps.

The incident happened on Lap 17 of 22 when Lowes lost the front of his ZX-10RR machine and hit Razgatlioglu, who was looking to go around the outside to gain a position and secure more valuable Championship points. The result was both Lowes and Razgatlioglu retiring from the race on the spot and both giving their view of the incident after the race, with both declaring that no one was to blame for the crash.

Discussing the crash and revealing he had contacted Razgatlioglu, Lowes said: “I’m okay. What happened was it was the first lap that Bassani led the group into the hairpin. They were a lot slower through Turn 3 so then I was behind Jonny. I think Jonny was surprised, he had to adjust himself because of a normal thing. Turns 3 and 4 here are like that in the race. As I was braking, they were slower than I expected. Or Bassani was slower than Jonny expected so he pulled up. Rather than go on the inside and cause a crash, to avoid that I went to the left. As I’m squeezing the brake closer to the corner, because I’m a little bit wider, there’s a little bump that’s caught many people out. I hit the bump and then I don’t know what happened with Toprak. I guess my bike hit him. He would have had the same problem as me where everybody slowed down more than we expected. Honestly, not really much of a mistake. One of those things in racing but obviously a shame to have a no score. I text him. I thought he crashed separately to me. I text him to say sorry, but he said it wasn’t my fault, so he was okay.”

Talking about his day and the crash, Razgatlioglu said: “I was waiting until the last laps for the fight. I was trying to follow and tried to keep the rear tyre because, in the first laps, I felt no grip. This morning with the SC0 tyre I’m happier because the bike worked really well. In the afternoon, we used the hard tyre and the bike completely changed. We crashed with Alex. This was very bad luck. This is just the first round of the season, there are many races to go. I hope we are coming back again. It was a small crash, I’m okay. He crashed alone. We used different lines. For me, it was bad luck because I was on the outside and we crashed together.”

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