Alvaro Bautista completes a perfect hat-rick in the Netherlands as he takes victory in the final race of the weekend
Alvaro Bautista started from pole from Jonathan Rea and Toprak Razgatlioglu. Bautista kept the lead into turn one on the first lap, but Razgatlioglu took second place off of Rea at the very first corner.
Razgatlioglu was not settling for second as at the start of the second lap the Turkish rider was already trying to find a way passed Bautista to take the lead.
The end of the Bradley Ray’s first weekend in World Superbikes did not end how he would have wanted to as on lap two he crashed out of the race. Straight after Ray the home hero, Michael van der Mark also crashed out at the last chicane. Followed swiftly by Xavi Vierge who also crashed out at turn one.
Lap three saw a change of the lead as Razgatlioglu joined the party and took the lead from Bautista. Quickly after though the Turkish rider was dropped back to third as Bautista and Rea both got back passed almost immediately.
Lap four saw another change for the lead as Rea pulled a move off on Bautista as he slipped under neath him and took the lead for the first time in the final race of the weekend. Bautista shot back passed Rea on the run back down to the final chicane. Razgatlioglu responded as well as he got back passed Rea for second place.
The titanic trio were battling for victory but joining them was Axel Bassani and Andrea Locatelli who could both sniff a podium only six laps into the race.
Rea crashed out of third place on the sixth lap of the race throwing away what looked like a certain podium!
14 laps to go and the battle for third was really starting to heat up. Locatelli, Bassani and Dominique Aegerter were all looking likely to challenge for a podium at Assen.
With still 13 laps to go Bautista had stretched his lead over Razgatlioglu to one whole second. The Spaniard has been almost unstoppable all year and shows no signs of slowing down. Two laps later the gap had extended up to two seconds and Bautista had completely checked out.
Both factory Honda riders crashed out of the final race of the weekend as Iker Lecuona crashed out on the 12th lap of the race.
The battles at the front of the order had died down towards the end of the race as Bautista had completely checked out from Razgatlioglu in second. Locatelli was comfortably sat in third place further back from his teammate in front of him.
With this race win Bautista has claimed his 40th World Superbike race win and the 400th race win for Ducati in their World Superbike history! Razgatlioglu finished in a strong second place and Locatelli secured his fourth podium of the year.
Images from WorldSBK.com