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Takahashi wins after Iannone takes penalty

Takahashi wins after Iannone takes penalty

The Tech 3 Racing rider won a dramatic Moto2 race at the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya on Sunday, in which Fimmco Speed Up rider Iannone was given a Ride Through penalty after taking the lead.

Yuki Takahashi took his first GP victory since 2006 on Sunday at the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya as he won an action-packed and highly eventful Moto2 race. The Japanese rider of the Tech 3 Racing team won from second place on the grid, profiting from a mistake by Andrea Iannone who was penalised for overtaking when the yellow flags were out.

A chaotic start involved a huge crash at Turn 1 and Alex Debón (Aeroport de Castelló-Ajo), Mike di Meglio (Mapfre Aspar), Roberto Rolfo (Italtrans), Robertino Pietri (Italtrans), Shoya Tomizawa (Technomag CIP), Héctor Faubel (Marc VDS Racing Team), Dominique Aegerter (Technomag-CIP), Sergio Gadea (Tenerife 40 Pons) and Alex Baldolini (Caretta Technology Race Dept) were those who went down.

Clear of the pile up were Thomas Lüthi (Interwetten Moriwaki Racing), Toni Elías (Gresini Racing Moto2), Takahashi, Iannone (Fimmco Speed Up) and Julián Simón (Mapfre Aspar) and they formed part of a group that battled for the top positions.

With the yellow flag still out from the opening lap and no overtaking therefore allowed, Iannone’s move on Takahashi to assume the lead resulted in the Italian being demoted back to second, a message his team tried desperately to convey to him but without success.

Shortly after Niccolò Canepa (RSM Team Scot) crashed out at Turn 9 and his bike caught fire in dramatic scenes, and Ratthapark Wilairot (Thai Honda PTT Singha-SAG) was another faller as the pace remained at the limit.

With eight laps remaining and Iannone not having taken his demotion the Italian was issued with a Ride Through penalty, he eventually finished 13th, and his surrendering of the lead placed Takahashi at the head of the race.

Following behind the Japanese rider were Lüthi and Simón, but at a distance of almost five seconds as the end of the race approached. Victory was therefore safe for Takahashi and he crossed the line 5.037s clear of the pair, who fought to the last corner with Lüthi edging it by just 0.163s for his third successive podium and in spite of a recently operated on collarbone. Simón’s third place was his third podium of the campaign.

Completing the top six were Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing), Toni Elías (Gresini Racing Moto2) and Simone Corsi (JiR Moto2), and there was a spectacular crash for Carmelo Morales (Tenerife 40 Pons) as he tried to slipstream Kenny Noyes (Jack&Jones by Antonio Banderas) for seventh on the start/finish straight. The substitute rider was taken to the medical centre for a check-up immediately after.

The race result means Elías remains at the top of the standings on 111 points, with Lüthi second on 94 and Simón third on 77. Tomizawa is fourth, just a point behind Simón, after his DNF.


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