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Many were expecting Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing Team Moto3) to begin right where he left off in 2015 and continue to be in the running for the lightweight class title. But the Italian didn’t have the start to the season he wanted, a broken wrist before the French GP only making matters worse. With his wrist on the mend, the 16 year old was back to his fighting best at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya, involved in the battle for victory from the off. No one had an advantage in the eight-rider pack at the head of the field until Jorge Navarro (Estrella Galicia 0,0) made a break in the last two laps.
It was all about the battle for the last two podium places, Bastianini determined to finally get back in the top three after failing to do so for 11 races. A heroic charge from Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) put the South African into second, Bastianini performing a wonderful overtake on fellow Italian Romano Fenati (SKY Racing Team VR46) in the final chicane to clinch third. With 49 points, Bastianini is seventh overall but 98 points behind Binder at the top of the championship. The result kept Bastianini’s perfect podium record at the Circuit de Barcelona – Catalunya alive, having taken three podiums in three years there.
Enea Bastianini: “It’s a nice feeling to be back on the podium! Today I had a good set-up that allowed me to be strong, especially when braking, and as a result I was able to fight for the win till the end. When Fenati passed me with two laps to go, Navarro managed to open a little gap and I knew it would be difficult to catch him, and so it was. However, on the final lap I managed to make a nice pass on Romano, taking the podium, which was our target for this Grand Prix. I had not an easy period lately, but being back means that we never lost confidence and concentration. It’s also nice to be here because I’m back from an injury: this result is undoubtedly a great satisfaction for me and for the team and a big boost of confidence.”
Bastianini: "I was passed too much!"