- Judith Pieper-Köhler
Spanish Superbike Championship outing ends in gravel trap
Markus Reiterberger participated in the last round of the Spanish Superbike Championship in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain, last weekend together with the Dunlop Test Team. Mainly the participation in the ESBK was used for the Dunlop Test Team and various tire tests. As a wildcard rider Reiterberger is not rated within the championship.
With only little preparation time, the 28-year-old qualified in third place on the grid and got off to a very good start in the first race. After having to relinquish the holeshot due to a wide pass in the last corner of the first lap, Reiterberger fought for positions three and four throughout the race. He managed to get past ex-MotoGP racer Tito Rabat in the final corner, but was unable to hold the line and had to concede fourth place to him, just short of the podium.
The start to the second race on Sunday afternoon at the Andalusian Grand Prix circuit was also good. Unfortunately, there was contact with another rider in the second corner and Reiti went down. The second race ended after only two turns in the gravel. Disappointed and with a few bruises and a damaged bike, the Bavarian had to return to the pits and could not finish the race.
In two weeks Reiti will travel to Spain again, but this time as a spectator for the final round of the MotoGP World Championship in Valencia to give his successful 2022 season a fitting conclusion.
"We had very little preparation time because the bike's set-up didn't go quite right. Then, when we found the mistake, I was able to catch up very quickly and secure third place on the grid. The first race was really great. I had a very good start and was immediately in first position, but then I went a bit wide in the last corner of the first lap and lost the position again. Until the end of the race I was fighting for third and fourth place. In the last corner I passed ex-MotoGP rider Tito Rabat and would have been on the podium, but I could not keep the line and he snatched the place away from me again. The second race also started well, but unfortunately it only lasted for a short time, because in the second corner I crashed due to contact and couldn't get back into the race because the bike had taken a good beating. That's very disappointing, but fortunately nothing else happened. I would have liked a different ending to the season though."