First MotoGP points for Barbera
The 2010 MotoGP season kicked off as scheduled on Sunday night in Qatar –in contrast to last year’s rescheduled contest moved to Monday. None of the three races put on for the Qatari fans could be described as a dampener on proceedings, with excitement the order of the evening. The premier class provided the best of the action, with twists and turns every step of the way. From Dani Pedrosa’s storming start to Casey Stoner’s rise to the front and surprising fifth-lap crash, the Grand Prix of Qatar had something to keep everybody on the edge of their seats. Valentino Rossi took victory in the first race of his title defence, ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso. There were battles for every position, rookies making their mark and some beautiful overtaking maneuvers in a race that hopefully is a sign of things to come in the 2010 series.
Páginas Amarillas Aspar rider Héctor Barberá marked his debut in the premier class with his first four points as a MotoGP competitor. The Spaniard made a flying start to his maiden race on an 800cc bike, but lost his way when an error in overtaking dropped him down to last place. Not one to throw in the towel, Barberá mounted a progressive comeback during the 22-lap race, finishing twelfth and placing in the points onboard his Ducati Desmosedici. With his late race pace, the rookie could even have featured in the top ten had he not suffered the earlier inconvenience.
12th Héctor Barberá: “I’ve earned my first points in MotoGP and I am pretty happy. I was able to get a very good start, but when I was overtaking Kallio at turn four I found Aoyama in my path and had to switch to the outside. I linked up with Álvaro soon after and that was the start of a new race for me, as we started off battling for five laps –getting in each other’s way a little- but spurred each other on to ride at a faster pace. It’s a pity that I committed a rookie error on the opening lap, because with my pace in the second part of the race I would have placed in the top ten otherwise. I paid the price for inexperience, but twelfth isn’t a bad result -even if it did come as a result of other riders crashing out. The important thing was to bring my Ducati home after 22 laps, getting the most amount of points possible under the circumstances and continuing to gain experience in the new class.”