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Barberá takes the glory in shortened 250cc contest

Barberá takes the glory in shortened 250cc contest

A superb comeback from a serious back injury saw Héctor Barberá take victory in the first 250 race of 2009 at Losail.

A dramatic, shortened 250cc contest at the Commercialbank Grand Prix of Qatar ended with Héctor Barberá taking maximum points on his debut with the Pepe World Team, the Spaniard making an amazing comeback following his back injury in Japan last year which cut short his 2008 campaign.

The start of the race was delayed due to rain and was therefore shortened to 13 laps in order not to affect the start of the MotoGP race at 11pm local time.

Once it did start Barberá got away well from fourth on the grid and battled for the lead with surprise package Jules Cluzel (Matteoni Racing). Barberá eventually came out on top but Cluzel joined him on the podium after a great race from 13th on the grid.

Indeed Cluzel was on the rostrum for the first time in his career having endured a tough season last year in the 125cc class without scoring a single point. Completing the podium was Cluzel’s compatriot Mike di Meglio (Mapfre Aspar), the 125cc World Champion enjoying a brilliant 250 debut and securing third place on the last lap.

The top six also featured Hiroshi Aoyama (Scot Racing Team), Raffaele de Rosa (Scot Racing Team) and Thomas Luthi (Emmi-Caffe Latte) who all finished within half a second of Di Meglio.

Just behind that group was poleman and title candidate Álvaro Bautista (Mapfre Aspar) who could not recover from being clipped on the first corner and failed to take advantage of the absence of World Champion Marco Simoncelli.

The top ten was rounded out by Ratthapark Wilairot (Thai Honda PTT SAG), Roberto Locatelli (Metis Gilera) and Gabor Talmacsi (Balaton Racing Team).


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