Defending champion Jonathan Rea secured his third race win in succession on the ZX-10RR this season after a front-running display from pole position at the Chang International Circuit.
From the very beginning of the first Thai race, in the full heat of the afternoon, Superpole winner Rea was in determined mood, making a clear gap after just one lap of the 4.554km circuit. He eventually finished the 6.279 seconds clear of Ducati’s Chaz Davies who crossed the line in second.
Rea also set a new lap record to add to his new track best from Superpole 2. He reduced the lap record to 1’33.436 on lap five and in Superpole he had made a 1’32.957 – on race tyres – as there were no qualifying tyres available at this round.
Rea said: “I did not know what my pace would be. I know it was fast enough to fight for the win but when I saw I had a gap of 0.4 seconds in the first lap I decided to try and put my head down as much as I could. As soon as I broke the one second mark I knew that slipstreaming was not going to come into play for the riders behind, so I just set my own rhythm. My pace was 1’33 and honestly I made a couple mistakes on some laps and was still in the 1‘33s. I managed to hold that rhythm and not try to over-push. It looks like we used the tyre a little bit on the right side but I guess that was to be expected as we were six seconds up the road at the end. I am really happy with that race.”