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Ant West records first ever GP win in style

Ant West records first ever GP win in style

Ant West records first ever GP win in style

Ant West became the second rider to win their first ever GP at the Dutch TT today after an explosive opening lap and searing pace in the formative stages drew him away at the head of the 250cc pack.

The Australian cut through the field passing four riders on the first circulation of the soaking Assen circuit and proceeded to set four consecutive fastest laps of the race to streak ahead of Franco Battaini and Sylvain Guintoli. In terms of the Championship many of the usual suspects were conspicuous by their absence. Randy de Puniet, who had not been happy with the set-up of his bike all weekend crashed out on lap 2. Fonsi Nieto broke down while fighting for fifth and Toni Elias could only claim a lowly 13th.

Like the 125 race, the riders were fairly spread out with the majority racing the track just as much as their peers. A thin dry line started to emerge but the leading trio had more or less confirmed their status.

In fourth position was Manuel Poggiali making the best of his title-rivals misfortune. He beat Seba Porto, Robbie Rolfo, Erwan Nigon, Christian Gemmel, Hugo Marchand and Johan Stigefelt.

Poggiali leads the standings but the points have tightened up considerably. The Aprilia rider leads Rolfo by 15, Elias by 17 and De Puniet and Nieto by 20 points.

The day was all about West who proved to be masterful in the wet and technical conditions; lifting himself up to sixth in the Championship as a result and trailing Poggiali only by 23 points. A nod also must go to the performance of Sylvain Guintoli who claimed his first ever GP career podium.

250cc, 2003, Gauloises Dutch TT

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