Jonathan Rea’s sensational unbeaten run in this year’s World Superbike Championship was ended in race two by Ducati’s Chaz Davies at Aragon.
Ulsterman Rea had won the first five races of 2017 on the factory Kawasaki to take control at the top of the points table, but the 30-year-old had to settle for a battling runner-up finish in race two at the Spanish circuit.
The race was billed as a must-win for Welsh rider Davies, who crashed out of the lead in the first race at the final corner on the penultimate lap.
Davies, who started race two from 10th place on the grid, took some time to work his way through to the front after passing the Pata Yamaha machines of Michael van der Mark and Alex Lowes, before passing team-mate Marco Melandri to set off in pursuit of Rea.
He quickly bridged the gap and made a pass to take the lead, but Rea fought back and on a thrilling final lap, the pair appeared to touch on the exit of turn 15, with Davies pulling a gap on the drive down the long straight.
It proved a decisive moment as Davies went on to win by half-a-second from Rea, with Melandri completing the top three.
Rea, who leads the championship by 50 points from Davies after the first three rounds, said: “I tried my hardest but it wasn’t enough. I had a good first few laps and got stuck into a rhythm but, with the slipstream on the straight, the group stayed together.
“On the last lap Chaz made a mistake and opened the door, but then he slammed it closed again.
“But congratulations to Chaz, he did a good job after what happened yesterday.”
Tom Sykes finished fourth on the second of the Kawasaki machines ahead of van der Mark, while Lowes dropped to 13th place from fifth following a mistake at turn 14.
Eugene Laverty was ninth on the Milwaukee Aprilia.