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Experience makes the difference in Moto3™

Experience makes the difference in Moto3™

The Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya once again saw a gaggle of Moto3™ riders dice for victory.

At various points in the race Danny Kent (Leopard Racing) attempted to break away from the chasing riders, but could never manage a gap of more than 0.3s which was quickly evaporated down the straight.  The experienced Brit quickly realised he would not be able to break the pack as he had done in Argentina and Austin, instead changing his strategy. “The last few laps I sat behind them and let them do their thing and pounced on the last lap. The strategy worked out really well,” he reflected after the race.

It is mature choices like this that have seen Kent take a clear lead in the Moto3™ championship, now 51 points clear of Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing Team Moto3). Kent’s experience is shown not only in race situations, such as the one mentioned, but also throughout the weekend as a whole as he explores one or two variations in bike set-up. Kent often finds a good base before the end of Friday, in contrast to the likes of Fabio Quartararo (Estrella Galicia 0,0).

There is no doubt Quartararo is a highly talented rider, achieving a podium in just his second Moto3™ race, and his first ever race at Austin. However the Catalan GP saw the French rookie struggle with bike set-up and confidence during the race, as he continues to get to grips with the move up to the World Championship level.

Kent’s teammate Efren Vazquez (Leopard Racing) is another example of the great benefit experience can bring in racing. Vazquez had started the final lap in first but found himself down the order due to a mistake later in the lap. Vazquez’s experience allowed him to stay calm and fight back in a controlled way, as opposed to a rash last corner move that a younger Vazquez was known for.

The race in Catalunya had the leading Moto3™ riders all setting near identical lap times in the mid to low 1’51s during the race, but only Kent was able to improve his pace on the last lap, setting a 1’50.942 on his way to victory. Experience not only tells a rider when to push and when to sit back, but also informs them of where the limit is, and in turn helps them to remain upright. This consistency is critical for a World Championship challenge such as Kent’s.

Last year’s Moto3™ championship demonstrated the importance of consistency, Jack Miller won six races but failed to score in three. Alex Marquez, the eventual champion, took only three victories but failed to finish only twice, with only two finishes outside the top ten. The experienced Danny Kent has already surpassed Marquez’s benchmark, with the Brit already having achieved four victories and only missing the podium once in seven races.

Check out the full Moto3™ race results, next stop is the Motul TT Assen on 27th June.

Moto3, 2015, GRAN PREMI MONSTER ENERGY DE CATALUNYA, RAC, Efren Vazquez, Enea Bastianini, Danny Kent, Leopard Racing, Gresini Racing Team Moto3

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