Espargaro wins again at Assen, Rabat 5th after strong podium fight, Pons with physical problems
Pol Espargaró took victory after an exciting head-to-head battle with Scott Redding, Moto2 championship leader, to take his third win of the season, his seventh in Moto2 and 12th in the world championship. The Tuenti HP 40 rider who started from pole position a Assen led for the majority of the race and was passed little before the end to study his rival and then passed him and beat him over the line by 0.117 seconds. With this result Polyccio makes up another five points on the Britain, now standing at 30 after having a gap of 47 points before the Catalunya race two weeks ago.
Tito Rabat did a good race without the final reward after making a mistake in the last lap when the most difficult part was done and was passed by Dominique Aegerter and Mika Kallio, losing out on the podium which he already seemed to have a hand on. With the fifth place at Assen Tito stays third in the championship although the top two riders are opening a bit of a gap.
Axel Pons did a good start, beginning a comeback which was cut short as problems with his forearm returned which need to solved urgently before the next round at Sachensring.
1. POL ESPARGARÓ “I am very happy to take this win at Assen after the one in Catalunya two weeks ago, continuing to close the gap to Redding. We took pole position and victory again, each time with more confidence and getting into a positive dynamic. It was a tough race in which I tried to go away a couple of times and when this didn’t work I tried everything to push the balance in my favour in the final lap. Scott was faster than me in the first sector and I changed the line so he doesn’t pass me, because I knew that if I was ahead in the second part of the circuit I wouldn’t lose out on the victory. I think I did a smart race with a great reward and we have to keep pushing, knowing that a crash would be a desaster and being behind Redding as well.”
5. TITO RABAT “I did a good race and had the podium within reach, but I made a mistake in the last lap and it escaped me. Pol and Redding escaped and I struggled to stick with the second goup. Once I did that I rode as fast as the two in front, but with pain in the arm because it went numb and I couldn’t get away from Aegerter, Kallio and Zarco. Shortly before the end the bike went away at the front, two riders passed me and I was left without the podium position and a good batch of points. It’s a shame, but you only have to look forward, first at the test in Argentina and then the race in Germany.”
22. AXEL PONS “I started the race pretty well, riding at a good pace and making up half a dozen positions, but at halfway through my arm started to go numb and it was impossible for me to ride. I thought about retiring, because I didn’t have any strength and I went wide in every corner, but in the end I could finish and the next week we have to take measures to make sure this doesn’t happen again and be able to ride physicially at a hundred percent of my abilities.”
Source: Pons Racing
Photo Copyright: Simona Vogel for Vroom Media