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Espargaro on a roll heading to Holland

Espargaro on a roll heading to Holland

Pol Espargaro returned to winning ways last time out in his home Grand Prix. Having achieved a strong Barcelona victory from pole, just holding off teammate Esteve Rabat, the chase after Scott Redding is now well and truly on.

Espargaro was generally viewed as the title favourite coming into this year’s Moto2™ season, confirming the predictions as he won in Qatar. However Redding was right behind him and would go on to win consecutive races in France and Italy, allowing for a significant championship advantage. Even though the Englishman finished fourth in Catalunya, he still holds a cushion of 35 which means he will be leading coming out of The Netherlands this weekend, no matter what happens in the race.

Espargaro was undoubtedly the winner of Round 6, in every sense. He shot from fifth to second place in the riders’ standings, although Tuenti HP 40 teammate Rabat is only four points in arrears as the duo set about a double assault on Redding and Marc VDS Racing Team. Redding is seemingly not too concerned, not least after he enjoyed driving a BMW M3 GT4 at Spa last weekend.

Behind Mika Kallio who completes a shutout for the leading two teams, ‘best of the rest’ is Dominique Aegerter of Technomag carXpert, whereas England’s Gino Rea is poised to make a second appearance with his own team. However, if any rider hopes to challenge for the crown, consistency is key. The lack of steadiness from his rivals still means Redding holds by far the biggest lead across the three classes of MotoGP, despite having fewer points than Dani Pedrosa or Maverick Viñales.

Espargaro’s own roller-coaster ride has taken him from a win to a crash, to a podium, to another crash and a fourth place en route to a second victory. He must now avoid mistakes such as that which threw him out of the lead at Assen last year, resulting in bitter dejection as Marc Marquez went on to celebrate his third win of the season. The practice action begins on Thursday.

Moto2, 2013, IVECO TT ASSEN

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