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Controversial 1-2 for Red Bull KTM

Controversial 1-2 for Red Bull KTM

Controversial 1-2 for Red Bull KTM

The Marlboro Grand Prix of Qatar saw Gabor Talmacsi winning in a controversial photo-finish ahead of his Red Bull KTM team-mate, and title contender Mika Kallio. Kallio had led every lap of the way in Qatar but was surprised when, in the final ten metres, Talmacsi pulled out of his slipstream and snatched victory - his third of the season.

With Kallio locked in a very close battle for the World Championship with Swiss youngster Thomas Lüthi, the KTM team had decided before the race that Kallio would have the support of team-mates Talmacsi and Julian Simon to help boost his bid for the title.

Kallio had qualified on pole position and dominated the race with Talmacsi cruising along behind in his slipstream for all 18 laps - apart from the final ten metres. On the final lap Kallio understood that Talmacsi would stay behind and did not force the pace and risk crashing, but was left shocked by the Hungarian's manoeuvre.

Team Red Bull KTM managing director Harald Bartol commented: "I am not happy at all. This was not a very clever move by Gabor, this could cost us dearly in the championship at the end of the season. Before the race I spoke to Gabor and Julián and made it clear that if they were in front with Mika, then they had to race to support Mika in the championship, but this did not happen from Gabor."

Talmacsi's unexpected victory cost Kallio five crucial championship points and the Flying Finn was fuming with his team-mate.
"I'm very angry, this was a stupid move by Gabor," said Kallio, who now leads Luthi by just two points, with Talmacsi a further 45 points behind in third place. "On the last lap I knew Gabor was behind me, as he had been all race, but I did not push because I knew that he should come second and that we would take no risks to crash. But then ten meters from the flag he passed me. This has cost me five points in the championship, now I just have think about the future and what is possible over the final three races."

Talmacsi also gave his point of view, explaining that he didn't realise it was the last lap of the race.
"The problem was I didn't know this was the last lap, my pit board was correct but the main board at the finish tower was wrong, I thought there was one more lap to go," said the Hungarian. "I'm a racer and I was close to the front and I had a slipstream and I was little faster on the straight, and when I pulled out the chequered flag came very fast and I didn't realise it was the finish. During the race my tyre performance went down and for sure Mika had a little faster pace than me and he still has a good chance for the title."


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