Jeremy McGrath Tests Jonathan Rea’s WorldSBK Kawasaki

Cycle News Staff | July 18, 2019

Jeremy McGrath got the opportunity to test ride Jonathan Rea’s WorldSBK Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR at Laguna Seca.  The following was provided by Kawasaki:

Jeremy McGrath riding Jonathan Rea's Kawasaki ZX-10RR at Laguna Seca
McGrath got multiple sessions on Rea’s race-winning Kawasaki ZX-10RR

Following a successful FIM Superbike World Championship weekend for the Kawasaki Racing Team (KRT) at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, the team stuck around an extra day for a unique opportunity on Monday as seven-time Monster Energy® AMA Supercross champion and Kawasaki brand ambassador Jeremy McGrath arrived to test his road racing skills aboard Jonathan Rea’s WorldSBK Ninja® ZX™-10RR.

Jereemy McGrath riding Jonathan Rea's Kawasaki World Superbike
According to Rea, McGrath has skills that translate well to the tarmac.

“Riding this bike is like a dream for me. I am such a big fan of all of these guys and Jonathan and I have been friends for a while,” said McGrath. “We’ve been thinking of doing a bike swap for a couple of years now, as he rode motocross with me a couple of years ago. Trying to learn the track and the bike was a steep learning curve, and I wish I could’ve stayed out all day. This track is another one I can check off the bucket list. After riding the Corkscrew, it was like a motocross berm, so it was really fun. I wanted to stay out and go faster but I’ve had a great day, I played it smart and I loved it!”

Jeremy McGrath with the Kawasaki WorldSBK team at Laguna Seca 2019
McGrath had a lot of support and eyes on him during his test ride.

McGrath first hit the famous U.S. circuit aboard a production Ninja ZX-10R to acclimate himself to the track layout and conditions before hopping onto Rea’s winning race machine. McGrath made the most of this bucket list opportunity, utilizing each session on the track to get tips from the four-time champion and current WorldSBK points leader Rea.

“It’s always great to see Jeremy, especially letting loose on our Ninja ZX-10RR,” said Rea. “I was impressed at how fast he was able to get the hang of things. The “King” is even fast on the tarmac. It just goes to show the natural talent he has on anything with two wheels. It was such a special day and fun to be the one watching from the sidelines instead of riding this time. It was fun to coach him along on an unfamiliar track and show him the differences between the dirt and tarmac.”

Rea and the KRT team are now on their summer break and will return to action on September 6th in Portugal as Rea will continue his push for yet another WSBK Championship to add to Kawasaki’s winning heritage.