In January, 2022, six-time WSBK champion Jonathan Rea was officially named to the Queen’s New Year Honours List for 2022. This marked the second time in his career that he’d made the list. In 2017, he was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE); in 2022, he was made an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE).
That’s definitely a strong start to a new calendar year. On October 12, 2022, the actual ceremony took place to make Rea an OBE. He, his wife Tatia, sister Chloe, and brother Richard all attended the ceremony, which was held in the Blue Drawing Room at Buckingham Palace in London. During the investiture ceremony, Rea received this prestigious award from the Princess Royal, Anne.
“I am truly humbled and honored to be recognized yet again at this level for my achievements and contribution to motorcycling. It seems like only yesterday I was collecting my MBE from Prince William at the Palace, but to receive an OBE from The Princess Royal and be amongst so many amazing names and legends who have also received one, is beyond anything I could have imagined,” Rea said.
“It really is such a privilege for me to have been made an OBE in the late Queen Elizabeth’s New Year’s Honours and to collect this honor not just for myself, but on behalf of my family, the wider Kawasaki Racing Team, and my fans, here in Northern Ireland and across the world,” he continued.
“What an amazing opportunity to shine a light on world-class motorcycle racing and especially the talent we have that comes from my part of the world. It helps for me to stay focused and fighting at the front in the World Superbike Championship,” Rea concluded.
As of the time of writing, Rea is currently in third place in the points in the 2022 WSBK championship, trailing Alvaro Bautista and defending champion Toprak Razgatlıoğlu. In his WSBK career, Rea has so far won a total of 117 races. He is also the most successful rider ever in the WSBK series to date. Congratulations to Rea on all his achievements.