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Rins wins interrupted opening race in Texas

Rins wins interrupted opening race in Texas

Barcelona’s Alex Rins has triumphed for the first time, winning Sunday’s opening Moto3™ Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas. At the end of a dramatic five-lap sprint following a red flag, the 17-year-old battled with championship leader Luis Salom who lost second place to Maverick Viñales at the final corner.

The weekend has been controlled by Rins, who on Saturday sealed his second pole position by a comfortable margin. At the start of today’s race, the Estrella Galicia 0,0 rider seized the advantage after being momentarily overhauled by Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Salom at the uphill first corner. Rins would start to pull away as dramatic battles formed for the positions in the bottom half of the top ten.

On Lap 12, the action was broken up courtesy of a race stoppage after Dutchman Jasper Iwema suffered a heavy accident. The RW Racing GP rider lost control of his bike on the exit of Turn 17, flying into the air. The 23-year-old was treated in the circuit Medical Centre before being transported to hospital in Austin.

The five-lap run to the flag commenced shortly before midday. On this occasion, Salom had learned from his first experience and slowed on the apex of Turn 1 in order to seize the lead and keep it. At the Turn 11 hairpin, Team Calvo’s Viñales shot down the inside of Rins for second but, carrying too much speed, forced both riders off the track. This gave Salom a healthy leading advantage but, having kept second position despite losing ground, Rins immediately began to close in. The recovering Viñales also returned to make for a thrilling three-rider squabble.

After several changes for position, it was Salom who took control at the start of the final lap. Rins retook the advantage at the end of the back straight, sealing the win when Salom ran wide at the final corner – thus allowing Viñales into second.

Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Jonas Folger was fourth from Mahindra Racing’s Miguel Oliveira, Caretta Technology – RTG’s Jack Miller and Ajo’s Zulfahmi Khairuddin. The top ten was completed by Ognetta-Rivacold’s Alexis Masbou, Ambrogio Racing’s Brad Binder and Redox RW Racing GP’s Jakub Kornfeil.

Salom and today’s winner Rins now share the championship lead with 41 points apiece, with Viñales just a further one in arrears. The championship continues on more familiar ground in two weeks’ time, as the Gran Premio bwin de España takes place at the Circuito de Jerez on the weekend of 3-4-5 May.


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