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Salom claims well-timed victory in Catalunya

Salom claims well-timed victory in Catalunya

Luis Salom has won the Moto3™ Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya to take the lead in the World Championship. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rider carried out a well-judged race, saving tyres before hitting the front in the closing stages. Alex Rins and Maverick Viñales completed the podium as the top five places were filled by Spaniards.

Salom’s second consecutive victory makes him the first rider to have won three races so far in 2013, also continuing his 100% podium record which helps him move ahead in the standings. In the opening stages he ran at the back of the front group to conserve his Dunlops, but elected to move ahead six laps from home and promptly pulled out enough of an advantage.

The race featured several leaders early on, including Estrella Galicia duo Rins and Alex Marquez as well as Team Calvo’s Viñales, although Salom had already provided the clues by sealing pole position on Saturday. Heading into the final two laps, Marquez and Mahindra Racing’s returning Efren Vazquez fell back which ensured a three-rider fight at the front; despite the best efforts of Viñales in the stadium section at the end of the lap, Salom had pulled out enough of a cushion on the back straight.

Behind what was the leading group for much of the afternoon, Miguel Oliveira rode the second Mahindra to sixth place as Jack Miller (Caretta Technology – RTG) finished seventh after running as high as second. The top ten was completed by Alexis Masbou (Ongetta-Rivacold) and Salom’s Red Bull KTM Ajo teammates Zulfahmi Khairuddin and Arthur Sissis. In 15th place, San Carlo Team Italia’s Romano Fenati finished in the points for the third time this year.

Six riders failed to make the finish. Niccolo Antonelli (GO&FUN Gresini Moto3) made a mistake at Turn 4 whereas Livio Loi (Marc VDS Racing Team) and Jakub Kornfeil (Redox RW Racing GP) collided at Turn 5, taking the former out of the race before the latter pulled into the pits several laps later. Three riders were removed in a multiple collision into the stadium section on the opening lap, as contact between RW Racing GP’s Jasper Iwema and Avant Tecno’s Niklas Ajo saw the pair collect Kiefer Racing’s Toni Finsterbusch who was approaching on the outside line.

Salom’s third victory from six races sees him lead the championship by five points from Viñales, with the next race taking place at Assen in two weeks’ time.


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