Kawasaki secure the 2020 Manufacturers’ Championship in Estoril
The Japanese constructor achieved a sixth consecutive Manufacturers’ title after dominating the 2020 season
After a much-amended season following the COVID-19 pandemic, Kawasaki has won the 2020 Manufacturers’ Championship with 392 points. The Japanese manufacturer has also claimed the Riders’ Championship with Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK) winning his sixth consecutive World Championship with the brand. Rea and his teammate Alex Lowes (Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK), who joined the manufacturer for the 2020 season, both achieved victories and claimed precious points for Kawasaki.
Kawasaki has dominated the Manufacturer Championship from Phillip Island onwards thanks to both Jonathan Rea and Alex Lowes putting in strong performances at the Australian venue, both riders have claimed a victory and even managed a 1-2 in Race 1. Kawasaki had to face the strong force of Ducati’s rookie Scott Redding (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati), who has proven to be successful from the first round, as well as Chaz Davies (ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati) as he entered his seventh year with the Italian marque. However, despite the Ducati threat, Kawasaki has been leading the Manufacturers’ Championship for the whole season and resisted the onslaught of both Ducati and Yamaha.
As the racing action resumed at the Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto on the 1st of August, the Kawasaki riders showed strong performances onboard the Kawasaki ZX-10RR with Rea winning Race 2 and claiming second position in the Tissot Superpole Race whilst Lowes got a top five finish in Race 2, highlighting their consistent pace. The Motul Portuguese Round saw five-time World Champion Rea achieve his first triple of the season, the Ulsterman winning all three races that weekend. At MotorLand Aragon, Rea was able to stand on the podium for all three races, winning the Tissot Superpole Race and Race 2.
The following weekend at the same circuit for the Pirelli Teruel Round, Rea conceded two victories to the competing Italian marque before reacting and winning Race 2 of the Pirelli Teruel Round after a fierce fight with Ducati’s Michael Ruben Rinaldi and Scott Redding. The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya saw Rea becoming the first ever WorldSBK winner at the Catalan venue, which is also the home race of the Spanish-run Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK. The WorldSBK Championship then headed to the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours for the penultimate Round of 2020. In Race 1, it was Rea who finished as the best Kawasaki riders with his victory, whilst Lowes finished in third place. The Kawasaki squad scored another 1-2 in the Tissot Superpole Race; increasing the manufacturer’s advantage in the standings. Race 2 saw both ARUBA.IT Racing – Ducati’s riders on the podium, whilst Rea finished in fourth place as the best Kawasaki rider.
Kawasaki headed into the season finale leading the Manufacturers’ standing. In Race 1, Rea’s scored the four place points for the Japanese constructor; whilst claiming his sixth WorldSBK Championship. In the Tissot Superpole Race, the newly crowned Champion claimed fifth place; Lowes suffered a crash in the early stage of the race. In Race 2, it was Xavi Fores (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) who scored points for the Japanese manufacturer finishing in eighth.
With a one-point advantage over its closest competitor, Kawasaki claimed the Manufacturers’ title in Estoril. The Japanese manufacturer and its riders have dominated the 2020 season and have been able to achieve their sixth consecutive title.
Steve Gutteridge, Kawasaki Europe Race Manager:
“It’s important for us to be competitive and to win again this year, it was like so close in the end. It’s fantastic, especially when you have manufacturers coming so far in this Championship. We did a fantastic job. But we have to thank all the teams, all the Kawasaki teams, and thank them for their motivation, we are really proud of them. We have got to keep pushing and keep bringing new technologies, to keep winning the Manufacturers’ Championship.”
Guim Roda, Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK Team Manager:
“The work starts immediately for next year to stay at the front. We don’t know the calendar yet but for sure we’ll be ready when it starts. We’re still working on out plans for 2021 because plans are a few months behind where we’d normally be and we’ll talk to all our teams to come up with a plan for next year.”
Jonathan Rea, Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK:
“I’m so happy because I know this title means so much to the engineers in japan. After my championships I’ve visited the factory and I can see how much it means to everyone. I’m so glad Xavi got us over the line but at least I was consistent… I started the year with a crash and finished it with one too! Racing never stands still and you’re always looking to improve so I’m looking forward to working on that.”
Alex Lowes, Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK:
“It’s not been the easiest season for me but I’m glad to be part of the green family and to help us win the manufacturers title. To win this six times is a real kudos for everyone and hopefully next year I can do more to help.”
Manuel Pucetti, Kawasaki Puccetti Racing Team Manager:
“It was a good day to help Kawasaki to win this. Xavi had a great round and it was important to have this result today.”
Xavi Fores, Kawasaki Puccetti Racing:
“To be honest it was a fun weekend for me because I felt strong in both races. I didn’t know about the points until after the chequered flag when some of the Kawasaki Racing Team WorldSBK crew stopped me! Kawasaki really deserve this championship and I’m happy to contribute to it.”