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Katoh KO´s the world in 250 Grand Prix of Japan

Katoh KO´s the world in 250 Grand Prix of Japan

Daijiro Katoh gave Honda their 499th GP victory in the 250 Grand Prix of Japan and nobody expected anything less.

The Japanese star overhauled early leader Tetsuya Harada after just one lap and then proceeded to pull away from the rest of the field.

Katoh´s tidy and smooth riding style was so effective around the Suzuka circuit that he amassed a lead of around a second a lap. The group left fighting for second consisted of an Aprilia melee with Roberto Locatelli, Tetsuya Harada, Marco Melandri and Franco Battaini all sharing the track.Melandri, suffering with his shoulder that he dislocated yesterday, soon dropped back and was overtaken by the hard charging Naoki Matsudo on the Petronas Yamaha. Matsudo went onto finish fourth and Melandri collected 10 championship points for sixth just behind Roberto Rolfo. Battaini was seventh and British rider Jeremy McWilliams was eighth.

The focus for the lower positions on the podium fell to Locatelli and Harada who followed each other for most of the race. The 125cc World Champion led for the majority of the distance but was sensationally overtaken by the Japanese former 250 title holder as the pair raced toward the finish line.

Another former Champion, Emilio Alzamora, ran off the track on lap two and suffered an embarrassing low speed crash that dumped him into the sand and out of the race.

Other fallers included David De Gea who lost control of his machine on lap 15, and Shahrol Yuzy who crashed his Petronas Yamaha rounding the Spoon curve on the same lap. 250cc debutant Katja Poensgen finished 22nd on her Aprilia.

250cc, 2001, Grand Prix of Japan, RAC

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