2009 Phillip Island 250cc Race Result - Red Flagged Race Throws Championship Up In The Air

Results and summary of the 250cc race at Phillip Island:

Marco Simoncelli won the red-flagged 250cc race in Australia, and with Hiroshi Aoyama and Alvaro Bautista losing points, came a big step closer to retaining his 250cc title. Simoncelli took the lead early on in the race, but Hector Barbera, Alvaro Bautista and Raffaele de Rosa stuck with him. Hiroshi Aoyama was with the group early, but could not match the pace of the leading group, soon dropping off the back. As Aoyama lost contact with the leaders, so Simoncelli started to edge away at the front.

With Simoncelli increasingly out of reach, Alvaro Bautista pushed on to try and catch the Italian, but his determination to stay in the title chase saw him push too far, crashing out on lap 18. One lap later, Roberto Locatelli crashed heavily at MG corner, and was left lying on the tarmac, leaving race direction no option but to red flag the race. Locatelli was later taken to the Clinica Mobile, where initial reports indicate that he is largely unhurt, but very badly bruised by the crash. 

The red flag meant that the result of the race was determined by the standings on lap 18, giving Simoncelli victory, and putting Hector Barbera in 2nd and Raffaele de Rosa in 3rd, the Italian's first career podium, crowning a strong weekend for the Scot Honda rider. Jules Cluzel and Mike di Meglio also followed strong weekends with good results, finishing 4th and 5th respectively, Cluzel lucky in crashing out on the same lap as Locatelli and retaining his position thanks to the red flag. The red flag also aided Hiroshi Aoyama, as the Japanese rider saw the place he lost on lap 19 returned to him, giving him an extra point for 7th place.

Simoncelli's victory shakes up the championship, closing the gap to leader Aoyama to 12 points, while Bautista's crash just about takes him out of the championship equation, and will further sour his relationship with Aspar team manager Jorge Martinez. 

Pos. No. Rider Manufacturer Time Diff
1 58 Marco SIMONCELLI GILERA 28'17.403  
2 40 Hector BARBERA APRILIA 28'19.837 2.434
3 35 Raffaele DE ROSA HONDA 28'20.007 2.604
4 16 Jules CLUZEL APRILIA 28'29.521 12.118
5 63 Mike DI MEGLIO APRILIA 28'29.595 12.192
6 17 Karel ABRAHAM APRILIA 28'29.816 12.413
7 4 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 28'29.858 12.455
8 55 Hector FAUBEL HONDA 28'30.515 13.112
9 14 Ratthapark WILAIROT HONDA 28'30.963 13.560
10 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA APRILIA 28'45.182 27.779
11 12 Thomas LUTHI APRILIA 28'45.625 28.222
12 52 Lukas PESEK APRILIA 28'46.060 28.657
13 6 Alex DEBON APRILIA 28'51.295 33.892
14 73 Shuhei AOYAMA HONDA 28'56.182 38.779
15 48 Shoya TOMIZAWA HONDA 28'57.932 40.529
16 11 Balazs NEMETH APRILIA 29'40.603 1'23.200
17 8 Bastien CHESAUX APRILIA 29'41.701 1'24.298
18 10 Imre TOTH APRILIA 28'40.153 1 lap
19 53 Valentin DEBISE HONDA 28'45.916 1 lap
Not Classified
  15 Roberto LOCATELLI GILERA 28'47.918 30.515
  7 Axel PONS APRILIA 26'09.203 2 laps
  25 Alex BALDOLINI APRILIA 24'23.926 3 laps
  75 Mattia PASINI APRILIA 11'11.057 11 laps
  56 Vladimir LEONOV APRILIA 12'15.184 11 laps
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Oh, come on now. Seriously? Was that last sentence really necessary? Or is it backed up by any evidence for that matter?
Since when is their relationship "sour"? Because Alvaro chose Suzuki over Aspar Ducati? They're professionals for crying out loud, I'm sure they can deal with that. And Alvaro only lost three points on Aoyama today, a much bigger issue was Estoril where he had an engine seizure. Will the next rumour be that Aspar had something to do with that to get back at him?
It's certainly not like Alvaro crashed on purpose to anger his team manager... Jeez.