World SBK legend Jonathan Rea was guilt-ridden after a tumbling Chaz Davies rolled down right in front of him – causing Rea to run over the Ducati rider.
Two-wheeled Motorsports the likes of World SBK have always drawn in crowds that have an affinity for danger. Watching a packed field of cars go at it is one thing, but seeing 20+ riders scramble for the pole while they do their best to maintain control and balance is something else entirely.
Unfortunately, due to the nature of the sport, falls and spills have become a commonplace occurrence for nearly every race in the diversified Motorcycle racing series. Most recently, the misfortune came down as a plague in the World Superbike Race at Misano, where Ducati works rider Chaz Daviez went down after a close-quarters battle with Kawasaki rival Jonathan Rea.
— Pirelli Moto (@PirelliMoto) June 5, 2017
Davies went down just as the two exited the Carro hairpin, and due to the proximity of the two, was soon set upon Rea’s front tire aimed directly at his spine. While Davies was able to get up and walk away from the crash, he did complain about having a sore back and had to be stretchered off of the track – a symptom that would later be revealed to be the cause of a fracture of the transverse process of the third lumbar vertebrae.
“I’m so sorry for this, I stopped with him on the slowdown lap to see if he’s okay, and he seems okay, his back was a little bit sore.
I really hope and pray that he’s fine and I’m really sorry but I had nowhere to go.” – Jonathan Rea
— Emily ♡ (@Emily_Macbeth) June 1, 2017
Davies is currently at a local hospital in Rimini receiving medical attention, and there is no estimated time for his recovery, although all hope that he is able to return to World SBK and defend his third-place placement. The Ducati Superbike team is understandably not divulging too much information as they wait for the dust to settle and observe how much time Davies will need to make a full recovery. Ducati Project Director Ernesto Marinelli affirmed that the team is standing fully behind their injured rider, and are confident that he will return with the same power and grace he’s demonstrated out on the track:
“We’re deeply saddened by what happened to Chaz. He will now observe a rest period, but he has a strong character and I’m sure he’ll tackle it with the same mettle he’s racing with.” – Ernesto Marinelli
Although many will blame Rea for the incident, replays of the crash truly do show Rea with nowhere to go. Davies’ tumble to the right sent him directly into Rea’s line, and as the two were picking up speed out of the hairpin, Rea had no time to react. A highly unfortunate turn of events to be sure, but one that comes with the turf of competing in World SBK.