Northern Ireland’s Jonathan Rea has finally ended Álvaro Bautista’s 11-race winning streak to take his first World Superbikes victory of the season at Imola.
While Rea picked up the vital points in Saturday’s Race 1, he didn’t get the chance to build on that success as Race 2 of the Italian round had to be cancelled on Sunday due to heavy rain.
Race 1 saw the Co Antrim Kawasaki rider start from second on the grid, catching Chaz Davies in pole position by the fourth turn.
Rea went on to take the win 7-8 seconds ahead of key rival Bautista.
The Spaniard does still sit top of the standings though, 43 points clear of second-placed Rea.
The four-time world champion had been struggling for a breakthrough and admitted he needed that first win “for my confidence, for my team, and the championship”.
While Race 2 was rained off, Rea did take another win in the Superpole Race, ahead of Chaz Davies in second and Bautista in third.