The official race report service of Kawasaki Racing Team.

16 Juni 2024

Lowes Secures Sprint Podium At Misano

The final day of FIM Superbike World Championship action at the Misano World Circuit ‘Marco Simoncelli’ provided warm and dry track conditions for KRT competitors Alex Lowes and Axel Bassani once again. Lowes took a podium finish in the ten lap Superpole race and Bassani a season-best sixth in the same ‘Sprint’.

At a circuit that has sometimes not been the kindest to KRT riders in the past - particularly in hot track conditions - Alex Lowes overcame any potential issues to take his fourth podium finish of 2024.

In the 10-lap Superpole Race Lowes was riding in the potential podium places from the start, keeping his good early pace all the way through to the end. He has now taken at least one podium finish at three of the four venues WorldSBK has visited so far this season.

Bassani was a strong sixth in the sprint race after qualifying 11th. He was helped in some ways by the retirement of other riders but his good pace and race craft made his top six score a well-deserved effort.

With the Race Two grid placings being based on the results of the Superpole race, Alex took a front row starting spot while Axel earned an important second row starting position for the finale at his home round.

Both official Ninja ZX-10RR riders made good use of their grid positions, with Alex soon into a strong second, which he held until eventual race winner Toprak Razgatlioglu passed him on lap one. Alex rode confidently in third place but on lap 12 of 21 he was passed by Alvaro Bautista.

Lowes was able to stay in close proximity to Bautista for some time but could not close the gap to the double world champion and he made sure of his strong points score for his fourth place finish.

In the final race Bassani had arguably his best ride in KRT colours so far as he took sixth place on lap two and remained in that position until lap nine when Danilo Petrucci passed him.

An eventual seventh in a long race in such hot conditions is proof that Axel and his crew are making real progress in their joint goal to bring him up to speed at the quickest possible pace as he continues to adapt to an inline-four cylinder engine configuration.

After three hot Misano races and three points scoring finishes each for Alex and Axel, Lowes is fourth overall with 124 points and Axel is up to 11th with 40 points.

In the Manufacturers’ Championship standings Kawasaki is third; in the team’s championship KRT is also in third place.

Donington Park in the UK will provide Alex with a home race weekend as it forms the fifth round of the season, to be run between 12-14 July.

Alex Lowes, stated: “The shorter Superpole race allows me to attack a bit more at the front. In the longer races I have to bring it back a bit compared to the other guys. But I am really enjoying it, so to be on the podium, and not to far from the top two guys, is mega for us. And this is not our strongest track. I was there for a lot of the second race but just in the last couple of laps Alvaro was on a different pace from me and I had to accept fourth position. That said, I really enjoyed it to day because my pace was good. Toprak and Nicolo got away early in Race Two because they were too fast, so I just tried to pace myself in the middle of the race and dig in from laps 12-18. I didn’t have the pace to hang on for the podium. Massive respect for the team and Kawasaki, as they have been working really hard. Hot conditions seem to have been the problem for us, definitely in the last couple of years, but this weekend it looked like it was really working well on the track, even when it was slippery and greasy. A great day for my team-mate Axel who had a top six today at his home race and he did a great job. Having both of us running in the top six is great for the Kawasaki Racing Team.”

Axel Bassani, stated: “Last night we changed something but not so big. Every practice and race session we are trying to improve the bike. We continue to push. Today was better, even though I was lucky in the Superpole race as there were a lot of crashes in front of me, so I was able to recover a lot of positions. Because of this I started from P6 for Race two - on the second row - and that always makes it easier to do the first few laps. During the second race I tried to manage it and understand how to be consistent until the end. In this race I understood a lot of things and I am happy about that. Also for my finishing position. On the last lap I tried to overtake Danilo, but this weekend he did an incredible job so chapeau to him. I thought my position would be maybe nine/ten at Misano this weekend. So to finish on Sunday with P6 and P7 is a really good position to be in.”

Tito Rabat (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) finished the Superpole race in 15th position. In the longer Race Two he ended up in 14th place, securing two championship points.

2024 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics

Alex Lowes:
2024: Races: 12, Wins 2, Podiums 4, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 4 (3 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 38 (18 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 1 (0 for Kawasaki)

Axel Bassani:
2024: Races: 12, Wins 0, Podiums 0, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 0 (0 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 6 (0 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 0 (0 for Kawasaki)

8 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Tom Sykes 2013, Jonathan Rea 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
6 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020)
5 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019)

Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 180 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 546 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 108 – second overall