Jonathan Rea controlled perfectly from the front to win Race 1 at Assen to take his 12th win at the Dutch circuit; matching Carl Fogarty’s all time Assen win record in the process.
Michael van der Mark had a much better showing in the race to move up from his seventh place start position to take the runner-up spot at his home track, while Chaz Davies also moved through from eighth to round off the podium.
Rea managed to take the lead from a fast-starting Xavi Fores at turn 4 on the opening lap, seeing off challenges from van der Mark and Davies throughout the race, pulling away in the closing stages.
Van der Mark managed to find a way through past Rea to lead mid-way through the race, although wasn’t able to respond as Rea re-passed the Yamaha and was never headed to the flag.
Poleman Alex Lowes had a nightmare race meanwhile, as the Yamaha significantly lost pace in the middling stages to slip well out of the leading pack to come home a lowly 12th.
Behind the top three was Tom Sykes in fourth, who pushed Davies hard for the final podium spot in the closing laps. He was ultimately unable to make an impression and had to settle in behind the Welshman, although will start tomorrow’s reverse grid race from pole position.
Xavi Fores wasn’t able to sustain the pace of the leading four and dropped away towards the end, although was able to lead home the second factory Ducati of Marco Melandri in sixth.
Loris Baz impressed meanwhile on his Althea BMW, taking his best result since returning to the WSBK paddock with seventh, only 2.5 seconds away from Melandri ahead.
Completing the top ten were Leandro Mercado on his Kawasaki, while Jordi Torres made a late race pass on Toprak Razgatlioglu to bring his MV Agusta home in ninth, Razgatlioglu hanging on to tenth.
Fourth place starter Lorenzo Savadori crashed out from seventh place, the Italian recovering from a terrible start that saw the Aprilia finish the first lap outside the top ten.
As a result of his victory Rea now extends his championship lead to 21 points ahead of Chaz Davies, while Marco Melandri remains third 33 points behind Rea.