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Last time out, 2017 World Champion Joan Mir (Leopard Racing) pushed to the limit in the Malaysian GP to hunt down early leader Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3). In doing so and taking his tenth win of the year, he became the first rider since Marc Marquez to take ten victories in one season in the lightweight class - one more and the Majorcan equals Rossi in 1997. Mir already has 11 wins overall, too, with one added from last season - making him the rider with the most victories in Moto3™ since its introduction in 2012. Fenati is on 10, so there is some history at stake for the two before they graduate to Moto2™.
Martin, meanwhile, remains on the hunt for his maiden win. After getting closer than ever at Sepang, he will want to round out the year not just with another pole position, but also with a number one spot on Sunday. Home turf would be a good place to do it. Fabio Di Giannantonio, his teammate, is more in enemy territory – but is similarly searching for his maiden victory. Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) is the man just ahead of both in the standings and is back on home turf, and he’ll also want to go out with a bang to gear up for a push at the title next season. And on the other side of his garage is Enea Bastianini, who completed the podium last time out and is on form as we get to Cheste.
Close behind in the final rush for points is British Talent Team rider John McPhee, who took a front row start and top five at Sepang. He’ll be pushing to both catch the ‘Beast’ and put some distance in the points between himself and Mugello winner Andrea Migno, who is only five points behind.
There are many home heroes on the grid looking for a final celebration in the season, too, and Maria Herrera will be back on track in the extra entry MH6 team. 2017 FIM CEV Repsol Moto3™ Junior World Champion Dennis Foggia will also be wildcarding, and he could prove an interesting addition - having destroyed the field in stunning style in both CEV races at the track this season.
Home glory, history, points and the chance to close out the year on a high are all on offer – with the pressure off, and the gloves off too.
1 year ago