PODIUM FINISH FOR REA AT ASSEN

Assen Circuit Jonathan Rea maintained his remarkable record of podium finishes at Assen in the Netherlands today, finishing second in race one of the third round 2013 World Superbike championship event.

It was the 30th World Superbike podium for the 26-year-old from Northern Ireland and his sixth at the 4.542km TT Circuit, having taken at lease one rostrum finish here in each of the last four years.

With Rea’s team-mate, Leon Haslam, watching the races from his hospital bed after breaking his left leg in a practice crash on Friday, Rea was the only Pata Honda rider contesting today’s two 22-lap races at Assen, which were won by Tom Sykes and Eugene Laverty.

Rea finished fourth in race two, just four hundredths of a second from another podium finish, and moves up to fifth place in the overall standings. He will test with his team at Assen on Wednesday and Thursday this week (1-2 May) before heading to Monza in Italy for round four of the series on 10-12 May.

Pata Honda's Jonathan Rea

Pata Honda’s Jonathan Rea

Jonathan Rea – 2nd and 4th

It was kind of typical Assen – we got on the podium, which was good! In race one I rode really good but just had nothing for Sykes. In race two I was feeling quite good in the beginning but it was a little bit my fault that we couldn’t be on the box. I lost too much ground in the early laps, making mistakes, and then got involved in a battle for third with two other guys. It was clear that I didn’t have the acceleration off the small corners and where I was really strong in race one, in the back section, in race two I had too much electronics interference. There was a little bit of inconsistency and we’d changed tyres, and it was clear that the tyre in race two was spinning more. I know we’ve got more power than this but it’s impossible to accelerate like the others so we need to find some kind of compromise in the early corner exit area to make the power more manageable. It’s lucky that we have a two-day test to do that on Wednesday and Thursday before we go on to Monza where speed’s very important. A two and a four this weekend is not a win like Assen should be for me, but we’ve got to be satisfied. We’ve come from a long way back and the championship position is looking a bit more healthy than it did after Aragon so I guess I’m satisfied with the weekend.

Pieter Breddels – technical co-ordinator

I think we had a good day, as we have had in other years here at Assen. Jonathan got second in race one with a phenomenal passing manoeuvre which is one for the books, for sure. It’s great to get our first podium of the season here at our home round and it puts the sorrows of the last race, some early testing, electronics issues and everything behind us to some extent. It looks like we are on the right way now, but for race two we changed tyres. We hoped to be a little closer to the front but we had a big fight for third which we missed by a few thousandths of a second. A second and a fourth is really good and makes the whole team happy, but once again our best wishes go out to Leon who is having the operation on his leg today. We look forward to welcoming him back soon.

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