by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 173
TO POL THE RACE, TO MARC THE SPOILS MOTO3 MOTO2 JUMP STARTS MAKE FRESH FINISH 39 GPWEEK.com // 39 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: Victory number five for maiden Moto3 champion Sandro Cortese came easily, thanks to three of his major rivals suffering ride-through penalties after jump starts. Then come-back rider Maverick Vinales crashed out. It left the way open for some refreshing new faces on the rostrum – including a new fledgling Australian star to kick-start a special day for a record number of home fans, when class rookie Arthur Sissis (KTM team-mate to Cortese) took third. In between them, podium second- timer Miguel Oliveira (Suter Honda). Zulfahmi Khairuddin led away and for the first six laps before dropping to the back of the lead group, eventually slowing with engine trouble then falling at walking speed when his KTM seized solid. Cortese took over, and with Oliveira in his tracks soon broke free. Oliveira took over for two laps near the end, then the German moved ahead and away to win by better than two seconds. The battle behind was furious, dropping to six bikes as first Niklas Ajo ran wide, then crashed twice, the second time terminally; and then Khairuddin dropped out with four laps to go. Sissis was inspired at home, regaining the lead from team-mate Danny Kent at Honda Hairpin, and sur viving a near crash over the hill as he hung on grimly. Alex Rins (Suter Honda) was fourth, then Kent (KTM), Fenati, Tonucci and Vazquez (all FTR Honda). All six crossed the line within nine tenths of a second; Kent beat Fenati by two thousandths. The jump-start absentees were front-row qualifier Jonas Folger (Kalex KTM), who had crept for ward to trigger those behind him: race-winners Luis Salom (Kalex KTM) and Louis Rossi (FTR Honda), plus Alberto Moncayo (FTR Honda) and Jack Miller (Honda). Folger retained three places on the last lap for 11th, Salom was 15th; Rossi crashed, remounted for his penalty, and finished gamely in 20th. Vinales had got to the front of the chase group when he crashed his FTR Honda on lap 15. Cortese, already unassailable, now has 305 points; the battle for second will go one more race, with Salom up one point to 208 and no-score Vinales on 199 – then Rins (141) and Fenati (136). Pol Espargaro hadn’t read the rules at Phillip Island. These dictate close slip-streaming races, at least for the smaller classes. The last remaining rival for the title took the lead off points leader Marc Marquez on lap three – and from there sailed away to win by a massive 16.8 seconds, more than double any previous Moto2 winning margin. “I felt at one with the bike,” he said both before and after the race, and the HP 40 Kalex rider’s long confident slides proved the point. Could Marquez have made a difference? Should Pol win, then Marc (Suter) only need score two points to take the title. He was engaged in what had become a three-way battle for second, and his final lunge was thwarted by a slide exiting the last corner, as the hitherto ill-favoured Australian Anthony West (Speed Up) stayed ahead to the line. West had come through to join the group in the last six laps, and was bucked by a second successive rostrum, at home. “People always say to me: wait for the wet. It feels really good to do it in the dry.” The loser was Scott Redding (Kalex), who had been in second ahead of Marquez from laps seven until the second last ... and by a mere tenth. Marquez had dived underneath him at the last corner. The brawl for fifth was resolved in favour of Dominique Aegerter (Suter), after Esteve Rabat (Kalex) was aced on the last lap by him as well as Johann Zarco (Motobi) and Simone Corsi (FTR). Randy Krummenacher and fast-starting Takaaki Nakagami (both Kalex) were right behind, fifth to tenth within six tenths. Torres led Smith, Elias and Simeon over the line for 11th; di Meglio took the final point. Andrea Iannone (Speed Up) had climbed to fifth on lap four when he slowed suddenly and retired. Mika Kallio (Kalex) was up to sixth when he crashed with two laps to go; Thomas Luthi (Suter) 12th when he crashed and remounted on lap 15. Champion Marquez has 299 points and runner up Espargaro 260. The battle for third is closer, with no-score Iannone (188) certain of a top four, but ditto Luthi (177) under threat from Redding (161). MOTOGP >>> PHILLIP ISLAND