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Viñales wins, Zarco holds off Terol in Sepang

Viñales wins, Zarco holds off Terol in Sepang

Maverick Viñales took victory ahead of Cortese and Zarco in a thrilling Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix. The 125cc title will now go down to the 2011 season finale after Championship leader Nicolas Terol finished fifth.

The penultimate race of the 2011 season got underway at the Sepang International Circuit in an oppressive 34 degrees with Championship leader Terol (Bankia Aspar) starting from pole position and needing only to finish in front of Johann Zarco (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo) to clinch the Championship.

Terol led the way off the start with Jonas Folger (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) and Sandro Cortese (Intact Racing Team Germany) following into turn one, while Zarco, not willing to let the title go without a fight, got the start of his lifetime and was up to sixth from 15th on grid.

Terol had a half second lead by the end of lap one, but Cortese and Faubel hunted him down and Maverick Viñales (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing), who rocketed to second by lap two from a 7th place start, caught up to the frontrunners. Zarco quickly caught the group and a four way battle for the win ensued.

By two thirds through, Terol appeared set to take the title as Zarco dropped to fifth. But on the start of last lap the Spaniard had a moment that let Cortese and rookie Viñales through, putting him right in front of Zarco. Before that lap was finished, Terol had another huge moment that nearly put him off the bike, dropping to fifth and handing Zarco third place.

Viñales crossed the line first in his third victory of the season after holding off Cortese, while down the order Faubel finished fourth ahead of Terol.

Jonas Folger (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) took sixth while Zulfahmi Khairuddin (AirAsia-SIC-Ajo) had his home crowd on their feet with every lap to cross the line seventh in his best ever GP finish.

Jakub Kornfeil (Ongetta-Centro Seta), Alberto Moncayo (Team Andalucía Banca Cívica) and Danny Kent (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) completed the top ten finishers.

Terol now sits 20 points ahead of Zarco and a win from the Frenchman at the final race of the season in Valencia could give him the title.

Tags:
125cc, 2011, SHELL ADVANCE MALAYSIAN MOTORCYCLE GRAND PRIX, RAC

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