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Rabat takes first blood in Australia

Rabat takes first blood in Australia

Tito Rabat has picked up where he left off in Malaysia, setting record pace in opening practice for the Moto2™ Tissot Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island. Championship leader Scott Redding was second quickest, moving ahead of Pol Espargaro on his final lap.

Having dominated the Malaysian weekend, Rabat has now shattered the previous Moto2™ Phillip Island lap record by posting a time in the form of 1’33.157, making the most of the track’s brand-new surface for 2013. Tuenti HP 40 teammate Espargaro looked to have repeated the team one-two result of the Sepang race, but pulled off the circuit at the end of the session while Redding moved up to second place for Marc VDS Racing Team.

Jordi Torres and Alex de Angelis completed the top five for their corresponding Aspar Team Moto2 and NGM Mobile Forward Racing outfits, while reigning Moto3™ World Champion Sandro Cortese was sixth for Dynavolt Intact GP. No time was set by Belgium’s Xavier Simeon who crashed just minutes in, but it was teammate Marcel Schrotter who was left with no option but to throw his Maptaq SAG Zelos Team machine into the gravel as he ran straight on at Siberia; both bike and rider would collect the protective barriers before Schrotter was able to stand, then being taken to the Medical Centre for check-ups.

Thailand’s Thitipong Warokorn (Thai Honda PTT Gresini Moto2) was another rider to run off-track, while the aforementioned Espargaro cruised across the grass and onto the sidelines just moments before he would have returned to the pit lane. The second Moto2™ practice session in Australia will begin at 4:05pm local time (GMT +11).


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