We took corner 5 of Adelaide of the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in the rain on Saturday, September 28, 2019 shortly before the start of Superpole – Rea then took pole position and Toprak was 3.136 seconds behind the Kawasaki rider in P16 only fifth to last.

Instead of sunshine, rain threatens recently for the France round

There is a category of riders who never have to worry about the impending rain, because they know their strengths in such conditions. In the WorldSBK, Jonathan Rea should be mentioned first. But also pilots like Tom Sykes, Leon Haslam, Alex Lowes, Garrett Gerloff and Scott Redding apply to “water-shy” riders like Toprak Razgatlioglu to fear opponents in the wet, against whom he usually has no chance. Above all, of course, the reigning world champion and whoever saw him in Imola, Misano or Donington 2019 in the rain, understands very well what this is meant. We were on site at all the events mentioned and at times could hardly believe our eyes. Especially in England, when, after two laps in the first race with Tom Sykes, the second-placed rider was almost five seconds behind the record world champion. Or in Imola, where he rode over a second faster per lap than the rest of the field during practice on a wet track.

Our photo from Sunday afternoon after the last race in Nevers, with from left the winner and newly crowned 5-time world champion Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki), Michael van der Mark (P2), Alex Lowes (P3) and the best privateer Loris Baz (all Yamaha) as fifth. The atmosphere at the paddock show was exuberant, and for Rea and his team the party didn’t start until the evening after.

Friday and Saturday will be particularly tough for Razgatlioglu

They also exist in MotoGP and until recently, World Championship leader Fabio Quartararo was also considered one of the drivers who lose too much to their opponents when it rains. But in his French homeland, of all places, the young man from Nice was able to defeat these demons and made it onto the podium in a rainy race. However, such an exploit is not to be expected with Toprak, even if it gradually improved in wet conditions. But as the winner of the previous year (on a dry track) he was only sixth in the first race in Nevers, 2020 in the rain. Two ninth places followed on Sunday, which would mean a catastrophe for him at the moment in the World Cup. Therefore, a lot of worry lines should arise with the Yamaha ace and its environment in view of the weather forecast. Jonathan Rea, who leads the World Cup with the same number of points as the Turks, can look forward to the weekend in France with serenity.

Johnny Rea (in the back of the picture) and Alex Lowes after their one-two victory for Kawasaki in the Superpole Race on October 4, 2020 – the day before, the Northern Irishman had already won the first race and the Lincoln man with 22 had finished third.

The voices of the Kawasaki Racing Team before the France round

Alex Lowes:I have some good memories of Magny-Cours from last year on the Kawasaki, with podium places in the rain. I hope it’s dry this time because we didn’t do dry laps in Nevers last year, so I want to try the Ninja ZX-10RR there in the dry. It’s a track that I’ve always enjoyed visiting and that I’ve always ridden quite well. I’ve said it in the last few races, but the goal is to be back and fight for the podium. That is my goal for the races in Magny-Cours.

Jonathan Rea:After the last few races on new tracks for us, I’m really looking forward to coming to Nevers. It’s a track that I have a lot of special memories of, that we’ve been on many times in the past, and from there we have a lot of data. Fortunately, last week we had a whole day of really nice weather at a Portimao test to continue working on the setup of our Ninja ZX-10RR. I felt very comfortable there, and the bike was in very good condition. The bike setup for Magny-Cours is very similar to that of Portimao. It has a lot of heavy braking, but also changes in direction that go really well with our Kawasaki. Now, with six races remaining in the championship, we are at half-time and the next races will follow in no time. The goal is of course to win and to provide positive impulses in the last part of the year, which will be very intense. But I’m excited, very motivated and can’t wait to get to France.“

Leon Haslam (HRC Honda) In a promising position in Nevers, he fell by highsider in the rain last year – in the wet, the experienced Englishman is still one of the favourites for top placings.

>WSBK Nevers Preview see separate report on this page.

Unless otherwise mentioned, applies to all images (© WorldSBK).