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An emotional Sam Lowes bounced back from three large crashes earlier in the weekend to win the Red Bull Grand Prix of The Americas.
The early stages of the Americas GP looked a mirror image of Qatar two weeks ago as Lowes and Johann Zarco broke away from the Moto2™ field. Meanwhile Tito Rabat dropped down to fifth. Zarco and Lowes were alone for the first part of the race before Xavier Simeon and Alex Rins battled past an impressive Franco Morbidelli to catch the leading duo.
All four of the front-runners were setting times in the low 2’11s until Xavier Simeon and Johann Zarco clashed in Turn 3, with Simeon unfortunately crashing out. The Belgian rider was visibly frustrated but Race Direction ruled that it was just a racing incident. “I was in front of Zarco, then at one point he braked very hard, cutting my way. Evidently he had no other solution but to throw me out of the track... he was not fair!” he said after the race, still frustrated by the outcome.
This incident allowed Lowes to create a gap and fulfill the promise he has shown throughout testing and practice. There was some worry over the former WSS Champion’s fitness after three big crashes had left him sore and bruised, but any pain soon went away as the adrenaline hit.
“It’s incredible today, the bike was great in the race so I had no excuses, I was pain free as well. I followed Zarco for some laps and I just had a little extra at the end,” said an emotional Lowes. Some alterations within the Speed Up team as well as an aluminium swing arm have been the changes that Lowes needed to go from challenging for the top five, to being a serious title contender.
Despite his coming together with Simeon, Zarco was able to secure second. The French rider and his Ajo Motorsport team have adapted to the Kalex machine quickly and avoided any technical mishaps as in Qatar. Moto2™ will no doubt go to the wire after a tricky start to the season for the title favourites, as the top seven riders are within ten championship points of each other.
Tito Rabat was able to secure his first points of the season, recovering from a poor start to charge to fourth. The Spanish Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider struggled with the setup of his Kalex and is eager to continue to improve in Argentina. “I made a good start and I tried to follow when Zarco and Lowes started to pull a gap, I pushed as hard as I could, but I also wanted to finish the race and pick up my first points of the season after missing out in Qatar,” he commented.
One of the stand-out performances of the race, as well as the season so far, came from Alex Rins. The Moto2™ rookie leads the World Championship with 29 points after finishing third in Austin. The Spaniard made steady progress during the early stages of the race to close the gap to the more experienced riders before settling into third. “It feels incredible. It was a tough race, the front guys pushed really hard. I’m happy with third and this position is for the team and my family,” said Rins.
In sixth position Hafizh Syahrin secured his best ever result in the dry, the Malaysian rider clearly benefiting greatly from a year of learning in 2014. He already has a reputation as a confident wet weather rider but could now become a regular top ten contender in all conditions. Anthony West, another rider known for his wet weather skills, was just behind in seventh. The Australian receiving upgrades for his Speed Up this weekend.
Click here for the full Moto2 race results.
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