The Spanish stampede charges into Italy

Monday, 27 May 2013

It seems being Spanish is a prerequisite for winning Moto3™ races in 2013. After four Grands Prix last year, as many different nationalities had taken race wins. 12 months later, as the championship heads to Mugello, a maintaining of 100% Iberian success would appear likely.

Back in 2012, a Spaniard by the name of Maverick Viñales took the opening victory, but this was followed by celebrations for Italy, Germany and France thanks to Romano Fenati, Sandro Cortese and Louis Rossi. Fast-forward by a year and Viñales is a double victor, following on from successes for Luis Salom and Alex Rins.

If history is anything to go by, Mugello should deliver an ultra-close finish. Last year’s first and second place finishers (Viñales and Fenati) were covered by just two hundredths of a second and the following Moto2™ race was also decided by less than a tenth. More of the same would be encouraged by the highly spirited local spectators.

Victories for Team Calvo’s Viñales (in Jerez and Le Mans) leave him with a 13-point advantage over Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Salom, with Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Rins 29 points in arrears of the leader but also on KTM machinery.

Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Folger is fourth on a Kalex-KTM, with South African Brad Binder (Ambrogio Racing and riding a Suter-Honda) maintaining a top five placing in spite of still being on the lookout for a career-first podium finish. In fact, the rostrum will certainly be visited by a new face this weekend, as no current Moto3 rider other than Viñales or Fenati has finished on the Mugello podium in any class.

There will be excitement for Italian wildcard riders Andrea Locatelli and Michael Coletti, competing for Mahindra Racing and Minimoto Portomaggiore respectively, but it’s not all good news as Florian Alt is on the sidelines; the German is unable to compete for Kiefer Racing, having fractured his right forearm in France.

Judging by the form book and the championship table, Germany looks most likely to knock Spain off the top spot if Folger can prevail, but a dream home Italian winner would be the first in the smallest class since Simone Corsi did the honours in 2008.

TAGS Italy

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