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Is Jonathan Rea The Best Racer In The World?

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This is the reason they usually disallow this type of direct comparison. Sometimes when a WSBK (or MotoGP) round is combined with US Superbike round, there will be some change that won't allow apples-apples. In this case, the similarities stop at the fact that both bikes are 1000cc. WSBK bikes have been developed for years with incremental improvements over the years, while MotoGP is subject to major rules changes each year, which sends them back to the drawing board. Sometimes, the rules are changed for the purpose of slowing them down (remember the short era of the 800cc bikes?). I'd theorized that Jonny Rea would be competitive against MotoGP riders, but I had no quantitative measure to say that HE COULD actually be the BEST rider in the World.




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I've seen him struggle on a Honda so you have to wonder if other WSBK riders are struggling because of their bikes. The Kawi is very well developed in race trim.


Rea is obviously very good and I won't say he would fail in MotoGP. He has the skills to do well if the right bike/team had an opening. I never bought into the idea that there were only 4 riders standing tall above everyone else. It made more sense to me that there were just 4 bikes (2 Yamahas and 2 Hondas) capable of winning. The 4 aliens proved their talents to secure their rides but surely there were other riders who could stir things up if given a chance. With the spec software in place, this seems to have been the case. Lots more capable of winning and coming close. But the top 3 remains unchanged. The 3 best in the world are still at the top, but on any given Sunday, it is not as certain as it once was. I think Rea would be comparable to CR35 on the same bike. Maybe 3rd or 4th in the championship on a factory bike.


The craziest thing I've been hearing is that the test proves the Kawi is good enough to race in MotoGP. I think it proves Michelin has a lot of work to do more than anything. Here's a well written article on the nuances that made the test results possible.



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