CEV Repsol, final round, Valencia: Race day round-up
Lorenzo Dalla Porta (ITA-Husqvarna) was proclaimed champion of the Moto3™ Junior World Championship in a thrilling last day of the FIM CEV Repsol season at the Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo, in front of 15,000 spectators this weekend. Marcos Ramírez (SPA-KTM) had to settle for second place and Raúl Fernández (SPA-Husqvarna) was third in the final standings after two intense races. In Moto2™ Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN-Kalex) achieved his first victory in the Moto2™ European Championship while Maximilian Scheib (CHI-BMW) said goodbye to the Superbike European Championship with a final victory. Marc Cortell (SPA-Kawasaki) won the last race of the Kawasaki Z Cup to become KZC champion.
There were amazing scenes in the first Moto3™ race of the day: Lorenzo Dalla Porta was seconds from starting the race as leader of the category when his machine caught fire on the grid. With the fire safely out and the bike judged race-worthy, the race was restarted: Marcos Ramírez challenging for the title from pole position with his rival relegated to the Pit Lane.
The Leopard Junior Stratos rider took the lead in the initial stages followed by Karel Hanika (CZE-KTM), Raúl Fernández and Kaito Toba (JPN-Honda), while a long way behind Dalla Porta went down in his attempt to catch up with the leaders, though he immediately got back into the race.
Marcos Ramírez, Karel Hanika and Raúl Fernández pulled away, and the rider from Conill de la Frontera built up a half a second advantage over the Laglisse Academy rider to win, with Lorenzo Dalla Porta finishing thirteenth. Karel Hanika grabbed his second podium of the season and Raúl Fernández finished second for the first time to receive the Repsol free fuel cheque.
Marcos Ramírez’s victory turned the classification upside down: now he faced the last decisive race of the season as leader, nine points ahead of Lorenzo Dalla Porta. The start of the second race was electric with the two title contenders in the front group along with Raúl Fernandez, Karel Hanika, Jeremy Alcoba (SPA-Honda) and Albert Arenas (SPA-Mahindra). The first half of the race was an intense duel between all of them with Raúl Fernández working hard with team partner Lorenzo Dalla Porta to attempt to neutralize Marcos Ramírez.
But everything changed when Ramírez slid off at the end of the main straight on lap 12. The Leopard Junior Stratos rider threw himself back into the race and started a desperate comeback attempt while Dalla Porta remained strong at the front. With his team-mate’s title secured, Raul Fernández overtook Dalla Porta near the end for his first Moto3 ™ Junior World Championship win, followed by the new champion and Dennis Foggia (ITA-KTM) who returned to the podium after finishing second in the inaugural race of the FIM CEV Repsol season, also in Valencia.
In Moto3™ Production, Aleix Viu (SPA-Honda), already holder of the title and the only rider in the category taking part, fell in the last corner of the first race; damage to his machine stopped him taking part in the second race of the day.
In Moto2™, Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN-Kalex) took his first Moto2™ European Championship victory ahead of Eric Granado (BRA-Kalex) and Ricky Cardús (SPA-Transfiormers). The Japanese Ajo Motorsport rider not only achieved his first victory but he also managed to secure the overall runner-up position ahead of Alan Techer (FRA-NTS Tpro).
Steven Odendaal (RSA-Kalex) took the lead right from the off, followed by Dimas Ekky (INA-Kalex), Tetsuta Nagashima, Eric Granado and Ricky Cardús, among others. On the ninth lap, Dimas Ekky fell and lost any chance of the podium. Four laps later Steven Odendaal also crashed out. On the last lap, Ricky Cardús and Alan Techer tussled for the last podium slot behind Tetsuta Nagashima and Promoracing’s Eric Granado, with the Catalan rider Cardús finally winning out.
Tetsuta Nagashima received the Repsol free fuel cheque, with Borja Quero (SPA-Yamaha) the best in the Superstock 600 category.
Maximilian Scheib said goodbye to the Superbike European Championship, achieving his third victory of the season with absolute authority. The Chilean rider headed the race from the start, followed by Anthony Delhalle (FRA-Suzuki), Alejandro Medina (SPA-Yamaha), Fabrizio Perotti (Kawasaki) and Carmelo Morales (SPA-Yamaha), who started poorly.
As the laps went by, Maximilian Scheib managed to pull out a gap of five seconds. Behind, Carmelo Morales and Alejandro Medina starred in a massive duel with Anthony Delhalle looking on in fourth.
On the last lap everything changed. The Yamaha Laglisse and the Leopard Yamaha Stratos riders clashed a number of times as they passed each other. Alejandro Medina fell back to be passed by the Frenchman. In a last-gasp attempt to pass Delhalle, Alejandro Medina fell taking the French JEG Racing rider with him, leaving the final podium place – and Repsol free fuel cheque – to Christophe Ponsson (FRA-Yamaha). Ole Bjorn Plassen (NOR-Ducati) finished sixth of the overall rankings and was best Privateer rider in this last FIM CEV Repsol meeting of the season disputed at the Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo.
In the Kawasaki Z Cup, Marc Cortell (SPA-Kawasaki) won the race ahead of Daniel Carrau (SPA-Kawasaki) and Eduard Rojas (SPA-Kawasaki), to take this season’s KZC title.
The first meeting of the new FIM CEV Repsol season will be in Albacete on April 30 2017.