The Indonesian round of the championship will take place between 3-5 March, just one weekend after an eventful opening weekend in Australia.
Currently Rea is third overall, having taken second place in Race One at Phillip Island, overcoming the fully wet track conditions to do so. He will be looking to Mandalika to get back into the podium positions after unexpected seventh and eighth place finishes in the two subsequent Australian races.
Rea has scored two race wins and three other podium places in his previous visits to Mandalika.
Lowes had one strong Superpole race finish in fourth place at Phillip Island and two unfortunate falls in the longer races. Mandalika is his first chance to get back into podium contention again, on what will be WorldSBK’s third visit to the impressive 4.310km long circuit on the south coast of the popular tourist island of Lombok.
The weekend in Indonesia will begin with two Free Practice sessions on Friday 3 March, then FP3, Superpole Qualifying and Race One on Saturday 4 March. Sunday 5 March will feature the ten-lap Superpole Race and then a final full distance Race Two.
Jonathan Rea, stated: “It’s good to start the 2023 season at the two circuits where we finished the previous season. The Superbike calendar is really good this year. We will try to capitalise next weekend at Lombok with some good points scores and look forward to understanding the year in general. Last year in Lombok I felt good until the last part of the races where the risks I was taking were really overloading the front. I expect to be stronger in Lombok than I was last year. We will go and try our best. Lombok will be more of a gauge for us than Phillip Island, as it is more of a normal circuit design - although it will be very hot.”
Alex Lowes, stated: “Mandalika was our worst track last year and Phillip Island was our best track. I have one target for next week and that is to enjoy riding because I think it might be a tough weekend for us. We have worked really hard to improve our package but it looks like either we have dropped back or all of our opposition have jumped a bit forward. We have got work to do. It is going to be hot and slippy, which are not the best conditions for us. We will work hard from Friday, enjoy it and try to grind out three good results.”
Returning WorldSBK star Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing) will look to Mandalika for an upturn in his prospects after three no-scores in Australia.
Twenty year-old Oliver König (Orelac Racing Movisio Kawasaki), in his second full WorldSBK season for his team, is out to score points at Mandalika, as he continues his personal learning curve inside the biggest production-derived championship of all.
2023 KRT Rider WorldSBK Statistics
Jonathan Rea: World Champion 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020
2023: Races 3, Wins 0, Podiums 1, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 118 (103 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 246 (204 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 40 (36 for Kawasaki)
2023: Races: 3, Wins 0, Podiums 0, Superpoles 0
Career Race Wins: 2 (1 for Kawasaki)
Career Podiums: 33 (13 for Kawasaki)
Career Poles: 1 (0 for Kawasaki)
8 x Riders’ Championships (Scott Russell 1993, Tom Sykes 2013, Rea 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020), 1 x EVO Riders’ Championship (David Salom 2014)
6 x Manufacturers’ Championships (Ninja ZX-10R 2015 & 2016, Ninja ZX-10RR 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020)
5 x Teams’ Championships (KRT/Provec Racing 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 & 2019)
Kawasaki FIM Superbike World Championship Statistics
Total Kawasaki Race Wins: 177 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Podiums: 524 – second overall
Total Kawasaki Poles: 105 – second overall