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26 days ago
By Ajo Motorsport

Zarco: “I thought it was possible to catch him”

Try as he might, Johann Zarco was unable to catch Nakagami in Assen but second place did his championship no harm.

"I'm happy for Takaaki, he deserved it" Johann Zarco

There’s no doubt that Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) has been the strongest rider across the last three Moto2™ World Championship races with two wins and now a second place in Assen. It was a hard fought second place, the Frenchman involved in a brawl early in the race that let Takaaki Nakagami (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) escape at the front. Zarco enjoyed the battle but it took a toll, the French rider doing all he could to catch Nakagami until the red flag cut his comeback short by two laps.

He wasn’t able to get a hat trick of wins but second place has Zarco move to the head of the Moto2™ World Championship. With 126 points he is tied with Alex Rins (Paginas Amarillas HP 40), but has the lead on virtue of having three wins to Rins’ two in 2016. Moto2™ is the tightest of all three championships, Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) is only five points behind Zarco and Rins and with ten races still to go, it’s wide open. Can Zarco keep his consistency and become the first rider to defend a Moto2™ title?

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Zarco: "Nakagami deserves the victory"

Johann Zarco: “It was a very good weekend, with us finishing second and leading the World Championship. The race was very difficult because there was a large battle between many riders. I fought hard and felt I was able to get in front and set my pace, but sometimes made a mistake and lost positions again. I saw Nakagami had taken the lead and I thought it was possible to catch him. When I was up into second he was setting a very good pace, so I tried to give my best and thought that reaching him was possible until the end -even with the rain. I think stopping the race was a good decision, because at the end the track was very slippery and it was risky. I'm happy for Takaaki, he deserved it.

“Overall, the weekend has been very good, I am very happy with how it went and I want to thank the whole team, because I feel very good on the bike and that is key to being up at the front.”