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One year ago in Jerez

One year ago in Jerez

One year ago in Jerez

Toni Elias won his second ever 250cc Grand Prix in last year's quarter-litre race at Jerez after a thrilling performance in front of an adoring Spanish crowd.

The race got off to a frantic start with the first six riders separated by only a second. Early mistakes by Fonsi Nieto, Franco Battaini and Randy De Puniet saw the order change several times before Manual Poggiali took control and stepped up the pace. De Puniet followed and Roby Rolfo shook off the shadow of a hard charging Ant West to form a leading trio.

Elias, nursing a broken thumb, shrank a time deficit of five seconds to catch the leaders and kick off an intense scrap for victory as the noise levels around the circuit reached a crescendo. Elias passed Rolfo and Poggiali and finally De Puniet on the last corner of the penultimate lap and held off a strong riposte from Rolfo in the final corners to hold out for a remarkable win. De Puniet eventually settled for third after mounting his own attack on Elias on the last lap.

Poggiali, the winner of the first two races of the season and early race leader, had to conform with fourth, a long way in front of Ant West, Seba Porto, Fonsi Nieto, Naoki Matsudo, Alex Debon and Joan Olive. However, the San Marino rider maintained his championship lead by 23 points from Rolfo.

250cc, 2004

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