San Marino GP, Misano: Race round-ups – MotoGP, Moto2, Moto3
Jorge Lorenzo has won his second consecutive Grand Prix, winning the GP Aperol di San Marino e Riviera di Rimini at Misano on Sunday afternoon. The World Champion, who took the lead at the start, controlled the pace as championship leader Marc Marquez beat Dani Pedrosa to second position.
Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli has delivered another glorious result for Lorenzo, who has now flourished at the Adriatic venue for three years in a row. The win, which is the 49th of his career and 28th in the premier class, also confirms that the Mallorcan has won both Italian races on the calendar for a trio of successive seasons.
From second on the grid, Lorenzo shot into the lead as pole-sitter Marquez dropped to third on the opening lap. The latter would put on a spurt in the second half of the race, but by this point had fallen to fourth place due to an unforced error; Marquez recovered from his Turn 8 mistake to catch and pass both Lorenzo’s teammate Valentino Rossi and his Repsol Honda Team colleague Pedrosa. However, as the two Honda riders engaged in a battle, Lorenzo’s already comfortable lead only grew.
Marquez’s championship lead is now 34 points with five races remaining, while Lorenzo has drawn level with Pedrosa for second overall. Rossi and Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Cal Crutchlow are the only other two riders who can mathematically still clinch the title; the Italian ended Sunday’s race fourth, while the Englishman fell to sixth on the final lap behind LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl. Alvaro Bautista was seventh for GO&FUN Honda Gresini, having claimed his maiden MotoGP™ podium at Misano in 2012, while Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso beat teammate Nicky Hayden and Ignite Pramac Racing’s Michele Pirro to eighth spot.
11th was Tech3’s Bradley Smith, while Colin Edwards (NGM Mobile Forward Racing) was the leading CRT rider in 12th; the American finishing one position ahead of Aleix Espargaro (Power Electronics Aspar) who, from an impressive sixth on the grid, ran fourth on Lap 1, but was handed a ride-through penalty for jumping the start. Six riders failed to make the finish, including Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone who was one of six Italians racing in front of a passionate crowd.
Pol Espargaro has won the Moto2™ GP Aperol di San Marino e Riviera di Rimini, denying Takaaki Nakagami a career-first victory on the penultimate lap at Misano. Tito Rabat made the podium as championship leader Scott Redding finished sixth.
On Saturday, Tuenti HP 40’s Espargaro – 38 points behind Redding in the championship following a poor race at Silverstone – had confidently sealed pole position, with his chief rival starting fifth for Marc VDS Racing Team. A clean start saw the Spaniard retain the lead but Italtrans Racing Team’s Nakagami, highly keen to win after finishing second in the last three races, went through on Lap 4.
As Nakagami’s tyres began to drop off the cliff in the final stages of the race, Espargaro relentlessly reduced a two-second gap and posted the fastest lap of the entire Grand Prix on Lap 22. The ultimately inevitable pass came at the end of the start/finish straight with only two laps remaining, demoting Nakagami to yet another second place as Espargaro’s teammate Rabat – who ran second in the early stages – completed the rostrum. Tom Luthi and Dominique Aegerter completed the top five for Interwetten Paddock Moto2 Racing and Technomag carXpert, correspondingly.
For Redding, it was a case of damage limitation. Eventually losing out to the likes of Aegerter, the Englishman narrowly beat Came IodaRacing Project’s Johann Zarco to sixth place; this means his new championship leading margin is 23 points – now less than a single race win. The top ten in the race was rounded out by Maptaq SAG Zelos Team’s Xavier Simeon, Redding’s teammate Mika Kallio and Aspar Team Moto2’s Nico Terol. On the victory lap, second-placed Nakagami took a moment to reflect with a large Japanese flag, remembering late compatriot Shoya Tomizawa.
Alex Rins has claimed his fourth race win of the Moto3™ season, beating Maverick Viñales by just one hundredth of a second in the GP Aperol di San Marino e Riviera di Rimini. Alex Marquez completed the podium while championship leader Luis Salom limited the points loss, finishing fourth from tenth place on the grid.
A three-horse race at the front quickly turned into a simple head-to-head when Folger – who had lost the lead to Rins and Viñales – suffered a dramatic highside on the fourth lap; he would suffer a fracture to the left ankle and an injured shoulder. The battle for first would rage for the rest of the race, with Viñales moving ahead on Lap 13 before Rins returned with a late-race surge; the eventual move would come at Turn 13 on the final lap, as both men avoided incidents knowing that Salom was further back in the pack. Marquez finished third, six seconds behind the winner, to jump ahead of Folger for fourth place in the World Championship standings.
Having crashed earlier in the weekend, Salom knew this race would be no easy feat as he started on the fourth row – his equal worst qualifying performance of 2013 so far. The Mallorcan was already in fourth place in the early stages of the race and would cross the line in the same position, but only after monitoring a train of five riders all threatening to demote him to eighth. Salom, 11 seconds behind the victor, would ultimate hold off the attentions of Jack Miller (Caretta Technology – RTG), his own teammate Zulfahmi Khairuddin and Miguel Oliveira (Mahindra Racing), as Niccolo Antonelli (GO&FUN Gresini Moto3) dropped to the tail of the battle.
There was a career-best result for Philipp Oettl as the German finished ninth for Tec Interwetten Moto3 Racing, ahead of San Carlo Team Italia’s Romano Fenati who suffered handling problems for most of the race. Niklas Ajo was 11th for Avant Tecno, rounding out a bruising weekend that had featured a trip to hospital, but there was disappointment for Aspar’s Eric Granado who retired in the closing stages after becoming the class’ best ever Brazilian qualifier with seventh on the grid. Luca Marini also retired, as the half-brother of nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi highsided his Twelve Racing machine into the first corner of the race; Italian national championship rival Andrea Locatelli (Mahindra Racing) also hit trouble at Turn 1.
Both Viñales and winner Rins – whose victory is his first since Indianapolis – now move back to within one race win’s equivalent of points of Salom. The championship leader is standing on 246 points, with Viñales and Rins respectively 19 and 21 points in arrears. The battle will continue at Spain’s MotorLand Aragon on 29th September.