Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after Sunday's races at Assen:
Fantastic Victory for Nakagami at ‘Cathedral of Speed’
Rd08 Motul TT Assen : Sunday, June 26 2016
Ambient: 20℃:Track: 23℃
IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia rider Takaaki Nakagami made fantastic maiden victory today at historic Dutch TT race a.k.a. ‘Cathedral of Speed’.
In warm up session, the Japanese rider set the fourth consecutive fastest time on Sunday mornings since Le Mans, which gave him the extra confidence for twenty-four lap race in the afternoon. Despite the looming threat of rain, the race has started with dry conditions at 1220 and Nakagami did the rest.
After making a good start in the leading group, Nakagami overtook riders one by one and snatched the lead on lap10. Then he created comfortable gap with setting four consecutive 1m58s0. When he was managing this gap, rain started to fall, which made the race red-flagged on the penultimate lap. Race was classified after lap21 and by adding twenty-five points, Nakagami is now fifth in the championship standings of seventy-five points overall.
Takaaki Nakagami (winner)
“I am sorry especially for Japanese fans to have kept them waiting the victory such a long time! Now, I climbed on the center of the podium today for the first time in my Grand Prix career. We have a good advantage with race pace, and I enjoyed the whole race today with managing the gap. The only thing I missed today was seeing the checkered flag on the finish line, however, considering the torrential rain at that time, I think red flag was the right decision. I would like to thank to my team, my family and all the sponsors who always support me.”
Tadayuki Okada - Team Manager
“Taka did a perfect race today. At the beginning he overtook riders with great composure and created the gap over three seconds with setting fastest lap times consecutively, which was the decisive factor in today’s race. Knowing that we were most consistent for the final part of the race, Taka managed the race as he was supposed to do. Even if the red flag hadn’t been shown, I believe we would’ve won the race, in any case. Last but not least, I would like to thank to all our team staff and sponsors who always believe and support us.”
Mahindra makes history with epic first win at Assen
Assen, 26 June 2016:
Italian teenager Pecco Bagnaia made history at Assen today – fighting every inch of the way to claim not only his first grand prix win, not only the first win for the Mahindra Moto3 team, but the first ever in the history of the sport for an Indian constructor.
The 19-year-old Italian’s triumph came after one of the fiercest races ever seen in the most competitive class in the MotoGP World Championships.
A pack at one stage 14-strong fought over centimetres of track and hundredths of a second, over the full 22 laps of the classic 4.542-km Assen TT circuit. The top three crossed the line within four hundredths of a second; the top six inside two tenths.
Bagnaia had qualified tenth, on the fourth row of the grid, but he put his white-liveried Aspar Mahindra racer at the sharp end throughout. After 99.924 km of the fiercest fighting, the 19-year-old star was ready to claim a virtual photo-finish win in a fairing-banging, paint-swapping brawl through the final chicane.
Victory came after the best season so far for the Mahindra MGP3O racing motorcycle. Bagnaia had already claimed three, top-three podium places. This first race win halfway through the 2016 season was proof positive of Mahindra Racing’s hard-won progress, and the perfect reward for tireless work at the Indian company’s state-of-the-art racing bike development and engineering facility in Italy.
Indian automotive and industrial giant Mahindra made a low-key start in grand prix racing in 2011, taking over an existing team in the final year of the old 125cc two-stroke formula. In 2012, with the advent of 250cc four-stroke Moto3 machines, Mahindra embraced full constructor status, with their own machine; and in 2013 launched the all-new MGP3O.
Dedicated development saw the Mahindra gain strength to become a regular top ten and then top-three challenger, en route toward today’s first race win.
Mahindra Group Chairman Anand Mahindra had launched the project in 2010 with the words: “The Indians are coming.” Today, when the Indian industrialist’s prediction came true at the most classic circuit on the calendar, he responded within minutes on social media: “How do I explain my emotions? Sorry for being a wimp, but I am moved to tears. Triumph over so many hurdles and scepticism.”
Victory moved Bagnaia up to fourth in the championship, just four points away from third.
Second team rider Jorge Martin withdrew on the first day, hand injuries sustained three weeks ago at the Catalunya GP not sufficiently healed to allow a safe race. His place was taken by fellow-Spaniard Alberto Arenas (19).
The next race is the German GP at the Sachsenring in three weeks.
PECCO BAGNAIA – First Place
“I didn’t believe it when I saw the chequered flag, but we knew that we were fast and strong this weekend. Every session we were fast, except qualifying where it was difficult to set a fast lap. In the first lap I overtook I think four or five riders, and in every lap I wanted to stay in first position as I knew that the rain could arrive at any time, and it was really important to stay at the front of the group. In the last two corners I thought it was impossible to get first, but finally I just did it, and it was incredible for me and for Mahindra.
“The MGP3O was really strong in the middle of the corner and in the braking points. But also in the straights our top speed was good, so it was easy to close the gap to any bike ahead of me. Thank you to Mahindra for giving me this bike.”
MUFADDAL CHOONIA – CEO Mahindra Racing
“My heartiest congratulations to everyone – to the team, the engineers, and especially to Pecco, for achieving Mahindra’s first win. We have been striving for this, and we have been so close a number of times. Now we have cleared that hurdle, and it gives us greater inspiration for more success in the future. This achievement is the result of a lot of hard work by all concerned, and I am so happy for everybody in Mahindra Racing. I think we all deserve this celebration – and then we get back to work to keep on moving forward.”
Mir brilliant as Assen haunts Leopard Racing
The Spanish rookie was author to another great comeback after starting down the order, his teammates both luckless in the Netherlands
At 11 o’clock the lights went out at the TT Circuit Assen, the Moto3 class igniting. The first lap went by without major issue but on the second disaster for the Leopard Racing team. A fall at turn 7 for Gabriel Rodrigo also claimed Fabio Quartararo, the French rider unable to avoid his KTM.
Quartararo ended up in the gravel with his bike in the middle of the track, forcing teammate Andrea Locatelli to run wide and re-join in last place. Amongst the melee, Joan Mir was able to take advantage and moved inside the top ten after starting down in 21st position.
The rookie from Palma de Mallorca joined the fray for the lead without fear and matched pace. On lap six there was further drama as Cant and Guevara fell just in front of him, deathly focus allowing Mir to keep the throttle open and avoid the carnage. Locatelli had been working hard to recover from last and was up to 20th, but 10 seconds behind the points positions.
Mir was fully committed to the fight at the front and cut up the likes of Bastianini, not fearing the experienced Italian. But just behind was his former CEV rival Bulega, the two having enjoyed many battles in 2015. The bad day continued for Leopard Racing as Locatelli crashed at Turn 5 three laps from the end.
The large leading group eventually broke in half with the first five running away. Mir was in the second part and gave his most in the last lap to cross the line in eighth place overall, yet another top 10 finish which confirms the growth of the Spaniard.
Mir is seventh in the championship thanks to his 50 total points while Quartararo (39) and Locatelli (30) are 11th and 16th respectively. The next round will take place at the Sachsenring circuit, Germany, on the 15-17 July 2016.
#36 Joan MIR - 8th:
“It was a good race, I'm very happy because despite starting far back on the grid, I was able to recover quickly. Maybe I could push harder at the mid-race distance and then be closer to the leading pack in the final laps, but I was still in the leading group and I crossed the line 0.8s behind the winner. I think we are still missing a little something to be able to start at the front and fight for the podium."
#20 Fabio Quartararo - nc:
“I have not had a good start, but I managed to keep my position in the opening lap. I felt comfortable and I was making the most of my race, overcoming Binder and Migno outside and inside. At that point, I was going to take Bagnaia and Rodrigo, but the latter fell in front of me and I hit his bike. I took a big hit, but I'm fine. Now I just want to think to my recovery and be ready for Sachsenring."
#55 Andrea Locatelli - nc:
“I got a good start and I was already recovering some positions. Unfortunately on the second lap Fabio [Quartararo] was touched by Rodrigo and his bike ended in front of me, I was forced to run wide and was in last place. I tried to comeback and I was succeeding, despite some problems that emerged with a few laps to go: at Turn 5 I lost the front. I want to thank my crew for their commitment, I am sure that together we'll find the right solution."
LOWES BATTLES HARD TO SEIZE VALUABLE FOURTH PLACE AT TT ASSEN
The Team Federal Oil Gresini Moto2 and Sam Lowes leave the Netherlands with a good fourth place and 13 valuable points for the Championship: the 25-year-old British rider was in fact close to a podium finish at the end of a complicated TT Assen, which has seen him fighting with determination despite the lack of grip which doesn’t allowed him to replicate the good performances shown during practice.
Started well from the second row, Lowes was in third place in the early stages of the race, then he was down in sixth position. In the final stages Sam managed to find a good rhythm and to recover well: fifth with three laps to go, Sam finally grabbed fourth place overtaking Lorenzo Baldassarri just before the race was red flagged due to the arrival of rain.
Thanks to the result achieved in the Netherlands Lowes rises to 121 points, reducing the gap from the top of the standings to just five points: in front of him there are, both at 126, there are Frenchman Zarco - second today - and Spaniard Alex Rins, sixth on the finish line.
SAM LOWES (4th)
“It was a difficult race today: I expected to be stronger, but actually we had some issues. I suffered a lack of grip and I was also losing the front end sometimes. Probably the track conditions have changed because of the rain that fell before the race and we were a bit unlucky, because yesterday the bike was good with this setting. However, I was able to recover well in the final stages of the race: I was able to be fast when the other riders started to drop off and I think that without the interruption for rain we could fight for the podium. We will keep working and we will come back stronger: we are just 5 points off the Championship lead, so now we look forward to Sachsenring!”.
“It was a really tough and difficult race today: Sam still rode a determined race and gave his best, picking up a good fourth place for the Championship. recently we collected less than we expected and we are struggling a bit: we are competitive, but there is something missing to be even more effective, so we will continue to work to improve. The points collected today are very important for the standings, we are only 5 points behind Zarco and Rins, so we are in a strong position for the coming races”.
Vierge and Vinales battle through demanding Dutch Grand Prix
Tech3 Racing Team rider Xavi Vierge fought determinedly in the 8th round of the Moto2 World Championship today and finished in 18th after the weather disrupted the GP. The 18 year old began the Motul TT Assen from the ninth row after a challenging qualifying session. Despite still experiencing some pain from the injuries sustained in yesterday’s fall, he launched off the grid and elbowed his way through to 20th by the close of the first lap, having overtaken five riders. He set into a consistent and strong rhythm, which saw him elevate up two more places by the mid point. Then, Vierge continued pushing and dived inside Mattia Pasini on lap eighteen as the distance counted down. The unpredictable Dutch weather struck with five laps remaining and drops of rain started to fall, yet the former CEV race winner carried on his pace. However on the penultimate lap, the red flag was shown, which drew the event to a premature close due to the increasing rainfall which resulted in a 17th place finish for Vierge.
Meanwhile Isaac Vinales resolutely fought through the demanding race at the historic Dutch venue and he eventually crossed the line three positions behind his teammate. The intermediate class rookie kicked off his campaign from the eighth row, and after dropping back two places in the opening lap, he regained composure and forced his way up to 23rd by the sixth lap. He tirelessly carried on pushing as he homed in on the pack in front as the end inched closer. He sealed 21st on lap nineteen, yet shortly afterwards, the weather conditions worsened and Vinales finally met the chequered flag in this position. He will seek to clinch a point scoring finish as the next round in Germany ahead of the mid-season break.
Position: 17th - Championship: 25 - Points: 3
"I felt the race went well even if the final result was not our target. I started the GP strongly and I was in the group of the top fifteen riders for the first five or six laps. However, after that, the tyre started to drop a little bit and I lost two or three tenths per lap with the top guys which was today’s issue. Nevertheless, after yesterday’s fall, I am pleased with what we achieved. I am also very happy with the work that the team did because after the crash in qualifying, they fixed my Mistral really well and it felt great today. Now my focus is Sachsenring where I aim to continue improving my riding style as well as the bike.”
Position: 21st - Championship: 23 - Points: 3
“We had a tough weekend but I am more or less pleased with my performance even if it was a demanding event. I had an issue with the setting and the grip which made the race challenging as there was a lot of wheel spin, yet I did my best and at the end of the day, I gathered some more valuable experience. Now I will start getting ready for the German Grand Prix where I am sure that we can have hit the ground running and close the gap to the front."
Hervé Poncharal - Team Manager:
“It was a hard weekend for the Tech3 Moto2 Racing Team but we have to be content with what we achieved as both riders pushed non-stop and learnt a lot. We knew it was going to be tricky for Xavi because it was another new track for him to learn which always makes his mission a little more demanding. Having said that, he did a great job on the opening day, but unfortunately, he ended up crashing in FP3 and lost the whole session as a result. The most important factor was that he wasn’t seriously hurt but, it caused him to lose confidence for the qualifying and unfortunately his grid position wasn’t anything to shout about. Yet, he recuperated during the night and had a solid GP with a strong start as usual. He then gained a lot of places and diced with Kent and Olivera who, as we all remember, were the leading riders in Moto3 last year. In addition, he also passed Pasini who is very experienced. Perhaps a point scoring finish was out of reach but I am pleased with what he has done and it’s mission accomplished. On the other side, it was a bit trickier for Isaac. He was never completely comfortable on the bike this weekend, however, he turned it around, did his best and had a good fight in the race so I am sure that he has gained a lot of knowledge and I hope he believes in the team around him and the package a bit more. We have one more Grand Prix before the summer break, which is the final new circuit for Xavi to learn so hopefully we can close the first part of the year with some points.”
Johann Zarco takes podium and Moto2 series lead at Assen
Ajo Motorsport rider claims second place in a race shortened by rain.
06/26/2016 - TT Circuit Assen, The Netherlands
Johann Zarco took a deserved podium finish at the first Dutch GP to be held on a Sunday. In a difficult race, in which the reigning Moto2 World Champion climbed from eighth to second place, the Frenchman extended his run of rostrums to three and moved into the lead of the overall standings. The race was called to an early end with two laps remaining, due to rain.
The Ajo Motorsport rider did not make a good start, losing positions on the early laps and dropping down to eighth place by Lap 3. As he upped his pace, he began to regain places. Once he had made it up into second position, and despite being 4 seconds behind the race leader, Zarco was gaining ground when the rain began; he was 1.5 seconds behind when the red flag was shown.
Zarco leads the Moto2 standings with 126 points, tied with Alex Rins and 5 points ahead of the rider in third place. The next race takes place in 3 weeks in Germany, on July 17th.
Aki Ajo - Team Manager
"I am very happy with the consistency Johann [Zarco] has been showing in recent races, and how he has regained his best feeling with the bike. The beginning of the year has not been easy, but it's getting better and better and now he leads the way in the World Championship. Today’s race was run in tricky conditions, and Johann also had to fight with other riders. Second position is a very good result and we must congratulate the whole team. Nakagami also deserves congratulations, for getting a victory after many years without a Japanese race winner."
5 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."
Baldassarri grabs fifth place at Assen
The Grand Prix of the Netherlands has just finished at the Assen circuit for the riders of the Forward Racing Team, Lorenzo Baldassarri completed a great comeback that got him back in the Top5 while Luca Marini, after crashing without consequences, ended the race in the pits. The Grand Prix started in dry conditions but it was halted prematurely because of a sudden downpour that forced the race direction to expose the red flags freezing the final standings to the twenty-first lap.
"Balda" had a good start but made contact with another rider on the first corner, dropping into twelfth place, the Italian fought his way back to the Top5 finishing the race in fifth place.
Bad luck for "Maro", as he was also getting positions back after losing some ground at the start. The member of the VR46 Riders Academy lost control of his bike ending up in the gravel. After going back to the garage he was forced to retire because of the damage of his Kalex.
"It was a good race, I am really happy. We had a good start but I made contact with another rider on the first corner which lifted my brake lever protection, I lost two positions but then I started my comeback. I had to manage my pace with my head, I felt fast the last few laps and I was coming back in front, unfortunately at the end, to resist Lowes, I went on the synthetic grass and I lost ground. In the end the race was stopped due to the rain and I brought home the Top5. Thanks to all the team, we are on the right track. "
"I’m disappointed for what happened, it was a difficult weekend on a track I did not know, we were starting from the back a little, unfortunately we could not make the most of qualifying due to the rain. The setting we found for the race was good, I lost a bit at the start but I was gaining positions back, unfortunately when I started to see the Top15 I fell. Too bad, now I will have a bit of time before the next race to finish the exams and recover. I would still like to thank the whole team who did a great job this weekend. "
"It was a great weekend, our riders have proved to be in great shape. Lorenzo performed consistently while Luca continued to surprise us even on circuits unknown to him. I want to thank the whole team for the great job and all the sponsors for the support. "
DI GIANNANTONIO SUPERB SECOND IN ALL-ITALIAN PODIUM AT ASSEN. BASTIANINI OUT
Gresini Racing Team Moto3 racer Fabio Di Giannantonio put on display a superb race today at the Dutch Grand Prix on the historic TT Circuit Assen: the 17-year-old rookie from Rome fought for victory until the last corner, crossing the finish line in third place with a gap of just 0.039 seconds behind winner Francesco Bagnaia. Di Giannantonio was then classified in second position after Andrea Migno, finished second under the checkered flag, was penalized. Di Giannantonio thus completed an all-Italian podium, replicating the fantastic result achieved in the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello.
The race of the other Gresini Racing Team Moto3 rider, Enea Bastianini, unfortunately finished with just 3 laps to go: the 18-year-old Italian in fact crashed when he was trying to overtake Nicolò Bulega. Enea’s race thus finished in the most unfortunate way, after he had lost ground after a couple of episodes in which he had been involved faultlessly and had managed to recover well, catching the leading group in the final stages.
FABIO DI GIANNANTONIO (2nd)
“At the beginning of the race I was determined to catch the leading group and after a few laps I did it; later, however, there have been some contacts with other riders, including Binder, who passed me under braking on the first corner, touching me and forcing me to go wide. I had to push hard to recover and so I made a few mistakes, so in the end I tried to stay more focused, setting my pace, and when I saw that I could close the gap with the front group I started to think that the podium was possible. On the last lap I attacked right away, making two passes, then I took the final fast corner on the outside in order to stay on the inside under braking for the last chicane: that was a good move because I managed to pass Fenati, claiming the third place that later became the second due to Migno’s penalty. It was a difficult race, but in the end we did it!”.
ENEA BASTIANINI (Rit.)
“Right from the start of the race it seemed that I was a target for the other riders... Rodrigo passed me crashing in front of me and there I realized it would be a very complicated race. Today many riders were able to be fast and the battle was really tight. Midway through the race Canet forced me off track, so I lost ground and different positions: the gap from the first was not much tough, but it was not easy to overtake. However, towards the end of the race I started to get a good pace, catching the leading group: in the last few laps I decided to stay around the third or fourth position waiting for the final attack, but but when I tried to pass Bulega, he closed the line and I crashed. It was not a good maneuver, but now we must look ahead. The championship is still long and I want to recover as much as possible”.
“It was a great race, in which our riders fought with determination until the end. Too bad for the contact that involved Bastianini, otherwise also Enea would have been in contention for the win. ‘Diggia’ has been very strong on the final lap, taking a beautiful podium and a very important result, if we consider that he’s a rookie and this is already his second podium finish in eight races. I’m very happy, congratulations to the whole team. We are a winning team and today we proved it once again”.
FIRST CAREER PODIUM FOR ANDREA MIGNO AT ASSEN
Thanks to a great overtake at the last chicane Migno is on the podium. The Italian trio of the Sky Racing Team VR46 was in the top positions till the end of the race. Feanti and Bulega respectively fourth and seventh.
Assen (Netherlands), June 26th, 2016 - It closed with the first career podium for Andrea Migno the weekend of the Grand Prix of the Netherlands.
Migno, second on the grid, was one of the protagonists in the leading group for the whole race. Fifth at the beginning of the last lap, at the chicane before the finishing line, he made an incredible overtaking. Second only to Francesco Bagnaia under the checkered flag, he lost a position on the podium for having exceeded the limits of the track.
In an Italian Top5, with the talents of the Sky Racing Team VR46 in the first three places of the standings for two laps, Romano Fenati is fourth. Seventh at his debut on the demanding Dutch track, Nicolò Bulega.
PABLO NIETO - Team Manager
Look a our riders fighting for the victory and the podium of Andrea are the signs of the constant growth of the whole team. It was an incredible race and this result is a reward for all the guys of the team who work on the track and at home. Andrea finally has achieved a great podium and now he has to continue in this direction. Romano was in the front positions till the checkered flag. Nicolò was fighting in the leading group but he lost the contact with the firsts in the last laps.
ROMANO FENATI - Pilota Sky Racing Team VR46
It has been a great race: a lot of overtakings from the start to the last corner. I was fighting with the top guys and I tried to close all the doors in the last lap. Overall it was a good weekend and I’m looking forward to back on track at Sachsenring.
ANDREA MIGNO - Pilota Sky Racing Team VR46
What an unforgettable Sunday: a great fight for 22 laps with a beautiful end. From Jerez we did a great step forward and this podium is for the whole team and the VR46 Riders Academy. In the last lap I tried to do my best: in the last chicane I overtook three riders. They have penalized me, but no matter: this third place is amazing.
NICOLÒ BULEGA - Pilota Sky Racing Team VR46
A great battle: a lot of overtakings and a really incredible pace. I was losing something in term of speed, but I managed to stay in the leading group until the checkered flag. In the last laps, due to some too aggresive overtakings and contacts with some riders, I lost the contact with the front group. But in the end it was a great fight.
Bendsneyder places in Top 10 and Binder extends Moto3 lead
Brad Binder finishes twelfth at Dutch GP, with Red Bull KTM Ajo teammate Bo Bendsneyder achieving his best result of the season with ninth at home race.
06/26/2016 - TT Circuit Assen ,The Netherlands
Moto3 World Championship leader Brad Binder ended the Dutch GP with his advantage in the lower cylinder class increased further, despite a run-off leaving him in twelfth place in the race. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rider added 4 points to his overall tally, helped in part by the absence of his closest rival from the event. Teammate Bo Bendsneyder finished his home Grand Prix with his the best result of the year, placing ninth.
A large leading group contested the top spots from the start at Assen, with Binder always amongst them. The South African was inside the Top 4 until a mistake with seven laps remaining saw him run off track. Rejoining the race in 13th, he gained one place before the chequered flag.
In the same leading group was teammate Bendsneyder. Starting from seventh, the Dutchman battled constantly for a spot in the Top 10. It was his first home race in Moto3, and he was able to please the fans with a ninth place finish –just 1 second behind the winning rider.
Brad Binder leads the Moto3 standings with 151 points after 8 rounds, and holds a 48-point advantage over his closest rival. Bo Bendsneyder lies twenty-first with 14 points. The next round for the Moto3 riders is the German GP, held at Sachsenring on July 17th.
Aki Ajo - Team Manager
"The last race [Catalan GP] was excellent for Brad [Binder], but it is normal that there are also races that aren’t so good. Each weekend we try to learn from our mistakes and solve our problems. Luckily, today he saved a crash, rejoined the race and was able to pick up some important points for the World Championship. We have to be happy and learn from what happened this weekend.
I am also happy because Bo [Bendsneyder] took a good step forward. It is nice for him to do that at his home race. It isn’t easy to ride in front of your home fans, and he did a very good job. It was excellent for him."
41 BRAD BINDER
"At the beginning of the race everything went according to the plan we had devised, but then I went up the inside next to another rider and I run wide. I wanted to recover, but I opened the throttle too early and almost crashed. I had to go through the grass –I almost went into pitlane but a cameraman signalled to me with his arm and I stayed out, which was lucky. Overall things have gone well; it had been a long time for me without making a serious mistake, but these things happen.
Unfortunately it happened to me today, when I felt strong and was confident of trying to win the race. I know we’ll be fresh again when we get to Germany. The positive thing about today is that we increased the advantage over the second placed rider, so it's not been a write-off of a race. Today’s result is better than zero points."
64 BO BENDSNEYDER
"It was a difficult race. I was fighting in the front group throughout the race and in the end I finished ninth. Although it is my best result in the World Championship, I still wanted more. Seeing all the fans and my friends here is very nice, this Top 10 finish is dedicated to them. I'm a little disappointed because we crossed the line 1 second behind the race winner, and I think we could have been closer, but I had initially said I wanted to be in the Top 10 and I finished ninth. I have to fight more; being in the front group helps you to learn how to fight and I think I leave here with a lesson learned."
The Assen race ends with crashes for Rodrigo and Guevara
The eighth race of the 2016 season was held today at the circuit of Assen, in Holland.
The day started with a perfect warm up for Rodrigo, who grabbed the second best time of the session, less than two tenths off the fastest guy on track. In the race, the Argentinian started from the eleventh position on the grid and straight away he attacked to reach the leading group. Gabriel was fighting in the top-3, but because of a crash at turn 7 he had to retire from today’s race, completing only one lap.
In the warm up, Guevara and his crew made the final checks for the KTM machine set-up. Despite the low temperatures, the Spaniard could maintain a consistent pace. Guevara started from the second row, as he tried to save some tyres during the first few laps of the race. Juanfran was working on his comeback and he was holding the 11th placement when he got involved in the crash of another rider. Because of that, he had to finish his race with 15 laps to go.
#19 Gabriel Rodrigo: not classified
“The warm up worked out smoothly, we had a really good feeling: we finished with the second best time and showed a good pace. I knew that, if I was starting in an aggressive way as in the previous rounds, I could reach the front positions and keep up with the pace. Within few corners I reached the top five riders, I kept overtaking and fighting. I was within the top-3, but on the second lap at turn 7, which is really fast, I got on the gas and I literally flew over the bike. I could do nothing to prevent the crash. It was a shame because we were again very strong and with chances to fight for a great result. The positive part is that during this weekend we proved that we are still fast as we were in the Catalunya GP, we showed that was not a coincidence. Now we can only start thinking about Germany and get 100% ready to keep working in this direction.”
#58 Juanfran Guevara: not classified
”In the race the first few laps went quite well, as per our plan. We started from the second row and we wanted to save the tyres for the end of the race, when we would have needed them the most. Unfortunately today we didn’t have much luck: we had an incident with another rider, who crashed out just ahead of me. I couldn’t do anything to avoid his bike and I ended up in the gravel. I tried to get back on track, but the bike was too damaged and there was no chance to continue. It’s a shame because we had a great pace and we could have fought with the front group. This kind of things can happen, we did all that we could. We’ll fight again at Sachsenring, once we get there in two-week time.”
Morbidelli scores first podium of 2016 at Assen
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Franco Morbidelli scored a superb third place podium in today's 86th Dutch TT.
It was the best result of the season so far for the 21-year-old Italian who has now moved to sixth place in the World Championship standings.
Morbidelli was on the charge from the start and rode a fast and aggressive opening sequence of laps that took him to the lead on lap four.
It was tense battle in the lead group with Morbidelli briefly slipping back to fourth on lap 10 when eventual race winner Takaaki Nakagami swept into first place.
After engaging Johann Zarco in close duel for second Morbidelli decided that securing third place when rain started on lap 19 was the safest option.
Riding a cautious race Álex Márquez finished an impressive eighth, after staring 13th, for his best result of the season so far and his first points since the Texas GP in Austin.
The race was red flagged because after 21 laps of 24 because of rain.
Franco Morbidelli: 3rd
"This has been a very good day and I'm very happy to get my first podium with the team, we have had this potential since the first race of the season. I want to dedicate this first podium to every single person in the team because they deserve it. When I saw the spots of rain I was bit more scared than the other guys so I slowed a little to make sure I got this first podium of the season. In the beginning of the race I had a lot of fun fighting with the front guys and leading for six laps. Now I have a lot of expectation for the next race at the Sachsenring, where I have always been fast."
Álex Márquez: 8th
"My goal this weekend was to finish the race, score points and not crash, so my strategy was to go step-by-step which is not my normal style. I dropped some positions in the opening laps to make sure I found a good feeling on the bike so I am happy to get this result. I was eighth when the rain started and I was careful to make sure I didn't crash. I will use this performance as a platform for the next races and go to the German Grand Prix with a lot of motivation."
Michael Bartholemy - Team Principal
"This is good day for the team, we have been waiting to be back on the podium since the Valencia race at end of last season. Franco has been close to the podium a couple of times this year so this third place confirms that he has the pace to do it. Since we arrived at Assen on Thursday the only thought we had with Álex was to finish the race and he did it with a strong performance to be eighth when the race stopped. Two riders in the top ten is deserving reward for all the hard work by the team."
Moto3 - Best seasonal result for 3570 Team Italia
Stefano Valtulini (18th) and Lorenzo Petrarca (20th) finish in the top-20 the TT Circuit Assen.
Memorable day for the Italian Motorcycling at the TT Circuit Assen. In the Moto3 race, Francesco Bagnaia (Mahindra) gets his first victory in career in front of Fabio Di Giannantonio and Andrea Migno, with five Italian riders who crossed the finish line in the first five positions. The FMI President, Paolo Sesti, and all the Italian Motorcyclist Federation want to congratulate the Italian riders for the results of today, starting from 'Pecco' who made his debut in Moto3 World Championship in 2013 with Team Italia.
In a race that will remain in the history of motorcycling, 3570 Team Italia gets some satisfaction for the work done in these last years and for the appreciable performances of Stefano Valtulini and Lorenzo Petrarca, authors of their best seasonal results. Started from the 22nd place of the grid, Stefano finished 18th, the best result in his first season in World championship. Same situation for Lorenzo Petrarca, who is 20th, giving to the team a double place in top-20.
Treasuring the work done this weekend, 3570 Team Italia will come back on track from 15th to 17th July at Sachsenring (Germany), ninth round of 2016 Moto3 World championship.
Stefano Valtulini (3570 Team Italia - Mahindra MGP3O #43) 18th
"Even though it's my best seasonal result, I am not completely satisfied. In the first ten laps I kept the pace with the riders who were in the points. Unfortunately in the continuation of the race I had some difficulties and, losing the reference in front of me, I couldn't get the points, which would have been a reachable result. The times of this race, totally in line with the top-15, give me some satisfaction: we are in the right way and in the next races we'll try to carry on the positive trend of this weekend."
Lorenzo Petrarca (3570 Team Italia - Mahindra MGP3O #77) 20th
"Finish in the top-20 is an injection of confidence, but we could have done better. During the race I wasn't able to repeat the good times of the first laps and this precluded me the opportunity to recover more positions. Anyway I succeeded in winning the fight for the twentieth place and in finishing the race, a big improvement compare with the last period that wasn't particularly positive. Thanks to the work done with the team, we'll try to improve further in the next races."
Emanuele Ventura (3570 Team Italia - Team Manager)
"The work planned by the team in the previous days helped us to take some steps forward for the race. In terms of result we did better than in the previous Gran Prix with both our riders, being in the top-20 with both. We'll keep working with this dedication, in order to increase the levels of competitiveness, helping our riders to express a good constance of performance for the whole race, necessary to reach results in line with our expectations."
Dalla Porta places tenth and Canet crashes out at Assen
Estrella Galicia 0,0 stand-in rider takes six points on first race for the team, whilst Canet suffers a highside when riding in eighth.
The first ever Sunday race in the 68 year history of the Dutch TT was also the 80th Moto3 race held since the class was introduced to the World Championship. Whilst the event was memorable for its historic significance, it was a weekend to forget for Estrella Galicia 0,0 rider Aron Canet. The Spaniard had begun the race with a strong pace, and he set the fastest lap of the contest -1:42.778- early on, but after moving up to eight place he was involved in an incident with 15 laps to go: A crash alongside Juanfran Guevara under braking saw his race come to an early end at Turn 16.
Lorenzo Dalla Porta –standing in for the injured Jorge Navarro- had a positive end to his first race for Estrella Galicia 0,0. The Italian finished tenth, after fighting throughout the 22-lap race in the large leading group. He had got up as high as eighth at one point.
"That's racing -it's about learning"
"Aron Canet showed his potential once again today, and Lorenzo Dalla Porta had a surprising debut for Estrella Galicia 0,0 to finish tenth.
Aron’s crash at the chicane was a real shame. After the magnificent practice performances and fastest times that he had during the weekend, it was clear that he could have fought for a place on the front row yesterday and had the pace to be in the front group today. But that's racing -it's about learning. Canet is a young rider, very ambitious and this is his first year in the World Championship. Now it is important to help him to manage his potential.
Although Jorge Navarro had to watch the race from home, the results for his rivals today –Binder finishing twelfth and Fenati in fourth- mean that the fight for the title continues virtually unchanged. The priority is his health, so it is important that Jorge recovers well. We send him our best wishes from here.”
"I made a mistake by braking too late for the chicane"
"Quartararo and Rodrigo crashed early on in the race, and that left me detached from the group. In the space of a lap and a half, I managed to come back and catch the leading group. I started to overtake other riders, but when I wanted to get past Mir I made a mistake by braking too late at the chicane. I closed my line on the entry to the corner in order to better stop the bike, but I came up to Bastianini, hit the rear brake too hard and highsided. I was unhurt, but it was a shame about the crash. I apologise to both Juanfran Guevara and the team, who have done a great job all weekend."
Lorenzo Dalla Porta
"I got my second Top 10 thanks to the team, and I am very happy”
"I felt good in the race. I didn’t have much feeling with the front on the first few laps, but as time went by I was more and more comfortable. That is a sign that we worked very well during the weekend. On the final laps there was a lot of overtaking, and that made me lose touch with the front group. I pushed hard again, but on the last three corners I dropped down three places when I made a mistake trying to overtake Bulega. I got my second Top 10, after my eighth place at Silverstone last year, thanks to the team -and I am very happy.”
Fierce battle rewarded with just one point
Livio Loi was not satisfied with fifteenth in the Moto3 race of the Dutch TT in Assen. Looking at the fierce battle Loi had in his home race, he would have deserved a bit more. The Belgian rider of RW Racing GP nevertheless was honest and realistic: “I lost it mainly in the opening phase and in the fast corners. It wasn’t good enough.”
As usual in the Moto3 the start was chaotic. In the jostling in the first few turns Livio Loi lost a few places and that cost him the connection with the front runners from an early stage already. In the second group, of some six to eight riders, it was messy as well. They changed positions often and in doing so the gap only got bigger, while none of them really gained anything.
Loi refused to give in and kept on fighting to be in the front of the group, but every time he made up some positions in the first sector, he lost them again in the latter part of the TT Circuit.
In the last lap Loi changed positions several times, from 16 to 15 to 14 and eventually to 15, after Maria Herrera overtook him on the kerbs of the final chicane, crossing the finish line 0,031 ahead of the Belgian. Andrea Migno was relegated for the same manoeuvre but the Spanish wasn’t, leaving Loi with a somewhat bitter feeling, but at least with a point in the bag.
Livio Loi - 15 (+ 18,549)
“It was a really difficult race and I’m not satisfied at all with the result. The start was quite good but in the first corners I lost too much positions. I knew it would be tough to get in touch with the first group again. I think I could have managed to close the gap if the group would have worked together, but every time I overtook two or three riders in the first part of the track, they overtook me again in the second half. In the fast corners I had difficulties. Everybody was busy fighting for a position instead of trying to cover the gap. Those battles made it extra difficult.
It’s unfortunate that Friday was the best day for us. We had bad luck in qualifying - indeed it turned out we had gotten a tyre with a fault - which forced us to start further back than we should be. And being further down the order made the race more problematic than necessary. It was a difficult day with those fierce battles and one point is not enough to be happy with, but it is what it is. At least I’m glad I was able to fight and finish with a point.”
PEUGEOT MOTOCYCLES SAXOPRINT TO MISS POINTS IN ASSEN NARROWLY
Both Alexis Masbou and John McPhee displayed a strong comeback from their starting positions in 21st and 23rd spot on the grid respectively to fight for a possible top-15 finish to score important points for the team.
The Moto3 class was a bit more lucky this weekend as none of their sessions were affected by the typical Assen weather with steady changeable conditions so it was the only race today in the Netherlands which lasted for the full distance.
But it was nail-biting matter for Peugeot Motocycles SAXOPRINT as both riders had to face with poor starting positions but the experienced Alexis Masbou and also his talented team mate John McPhee managed it well to make up position through the pack to play their role fighting at the front of the first chasing group.
French rider Masbou was already racing in a points scoring position, settled in P14 when another rider tried to make a move on him but with too optimistic effort as he lost the front and crashed. Unfortunate for Masbou as he couldn’t do nothing to avoid crashing himself when he was hit by the other bike.
Likewise, his team mate young Scottish rider McPhee also climbed up positions through the field to race close with Masbou till be-said incident. McPhee was leading the massive group mostly, tried to pull away but was not able to do so due to the Assen track’s characteristics for which a slipstream is always a help to follow other riders. This fact didn’t McPhee allow to open a gap and more unfortunate he couldn’t defend his position till the line to come home in 16th position just outside the points. But both riders reported about a more positive weekend overall, looking forward already to the next race in Germany to receive some upgrades to the Peugeot Moto3 machine there.
The World Championship will take a three weeks breaks before race action returns at the Sachsenring mid of July.
#10 Alexis MASBOU – DNF:
“For sure I’m quite disappointed because this weekend didn’t go so bad. Of course, FP2 on Friday afternoon didn’t bring what we expected, particularly after the first session, but on Saturday morning we found the way back to the right direction. Yesterday, we worked really hard on what we can do with our bike. This morning we made a further step again and during the race I was able to fight for the points. Obviously it wasn’t an easy task due to my position on the grid, even more it’s difficult to gain positions through the first part of the track with this series of tight corners. But I managed it to come back lap by lap and try to pass riders in front of me every time. I already was racing in 14th place and at this time I was thinking that it is possible to score my first points this season finally. But one rider tried to pass me when he lost the front at this time and took me out of the race. So everything was lost again what I already achieved in this race. I’m really a bit upset because today’s race was the best one since what we did in Jerez. Since then it was not an easy time but now we’re little bit closer to the points position again. Anyway, I’m disappointed that I couldn’t score this points today.”
#17 John McPHEE – 16th (World Championship position22nd, 10 points):
“I’m angry because I felt that we should be in the points today, my speed was good and also my feeling was excellent. But I think the main problem came from the qualifying because we started so far back it was difficult in the first laps to get to the front group. But then a gap opened and I was stuck in the second group. I tried for a couple of times to break away but it wasn’t possible at any time. Due to the slipstream the other riders were able to pass me again. However, it was a positive weekend overall as we made a big step forward. Not only in terms of my lap times which were really good but as I said, foremost due to the improved confidence with the bike. We still have a technical issue but we have some new parts coming for the Sachsenring round. In general, things are more positive. If I could finish the race inside the points I’m more happy for sure but anyway it was a good race and a good fight so I’m already looking forward to the Sachsenring race.”
Terrell THIEN (Team manager):
“It wasn’t a bad race for us but we didn’t get what we would have deserved today. Alexis found a strong pace during race as he was able to lap with similar times as the front group. Unfortunately, he was taken out of race from another rider otherwise he could have finished in the points. The main problem on his side was the starting position which got even worse due to the penalty to start three positions further back. But during the race he showed a strong come back to race in 14th position till that point he crashed. So the first points for him were on the table today but this kind of way also part of racing. On the other side we expected a bit more coming from John because he started well into the weekend with a decent performance during all practice sessions. But towards the end of the race we missed somewhat of his fighting spirit when he missed the chance to cross the line in front of his competitors. In terms of his lap times his bike was also well prepared for this race so he needs to find his way back to fight for positions till the line. But in general we can be satisfied with this weekend as most of it went smoothly.”
Kent & Oliveira take points in Holland
A shortened race saw both Danny Kent and Miguel Oliveira end inside the points, the Brit taken out after the flag.
The Motul TT Assen proved an uphill battle for the Leopard Racing Team in the intermediate class. At 12:20 both Miguel Oliveira and Danny Kent lowered their visors and twisted the throttle to start round eight of the World Championship.
The start was not the best, especially for Oliveira, who, after his best Qualifying of the season, found himself 21st after contact with Simone Corsi. Meanwhile Danny Kent was able to keep his position, stuck in the group battling for points.
After the first third of the race, Oliveira’s confidence grew and his pace increased, arriving with his teammate. They engaged in a duel alongside Schrotter and Simon for 13th spot.
In the final laps Danny Kent put on a charge to get rid of Pasini and Vierge, catching up again with his teammate after a mid race dip in speed. Thee laps from the end the rain made its expected appearance and complicated matters as the two teammates battled for points.
Race leader Nakagami raised his hand and the red flagged was brought out two laps from the end, the Japanese rider taking his first win while Kent and Oliveira took 14th and 15th respectively. It was an unfortunate end to the race for Kent who fell as a result of another rider’s accident after the flag.
#52 Danny Kent - 14th:
“Not a bad race, probably one of our better races this year. First laps I was too slow and everyone got away. My pace during the race wasn’t too bad but again it’s one of those what ifs. Next weekend we need to work harder for all the weekend."
#44 Miguel Oliveira - 15th:
“It was a difficult race. I made a good start but at the first corner on the left (Turn 5) I had contact with another rider and almost fell. I rallied and I had to make up several positions. It was difficult to pick up the pace and, when I climbed back into the points, it started to rain."
Remy 20th At The Cathedral Of Speed
As announced a few days ago, Aussie teen Remy Gardner was back on World Championship duty with Tasca Scuderia Racing in today's Dutch Moto2 GP where he raced hard to finish 20th after rain meant a red flag during the 24 lap race at Assen, the 'Cathedral of Speed'.
Gardner, who scored his first ever Moto2 World Championship point on his debut with the squad at the Catalan GP, was making progress with set-up during Free Practice before a qualifying crash saw him start from 26th on the grid.
With the threat of rain ahead of the race and despite a slight loss in confidence following his qualifying tumble Remy was focused on making a good start after a strong morning morning warm up saw him lapping within half a second of his personal best lap of the weekend.
Lap one saw the #87 rider up to 21st before a multi lap battle raged. Remy dropped to 24th before regrouping to finish 20th in a shortened race that was red flagged on safety grounds due to the weather.
Remy will now look ahead to his next ride with Scuderia Tasca GP Racing at the Sachsenring where if all goes to plan he can once again fight for the top 15 and more World Championship points.
Remy Gardner - 20th: "It was a difficult day. After yesterday I definitely lost a bit of confidence and although we thought we had found the way to go with the setting we maybe got a bit ahead of ourselves but at least we know what to work on. I really just wanted to bring it home and gain some more experience and not crash it again, especially when the rain came. I made a decent start in the race and made up a few places but then got held up a bit by Mulhauser. I spent most of the race fighting with Vinales and it was a bit of a boring race but sometimes that's how it is and you have to move on to the next one. I'm off to Germany on Tuesday and already looking forward to being back on track at the Sachsenring with Tasca Racing!"
KIP Retires in Early Stages at Assen
Rd08 Motul TT Assen : Sunday, June 26 2016
Ambient: 18℃ : Track: 28℃
Honda Team Asia rider Khairul Idham Pawi had another unfortunate race, crashing out at trun1 on the second lap in the historic Dutch TT race.
The Malaysian Moto3 rookie, who had to start the race from twenty-eighth on the grid, made a good start and recovered eight positions in the opening lap. With the high hope of climbing up more positions, Pawi entered turn1 then suddenly he lost front and fell down on the ground. It was when KIP had to finish the race from the historic venue.
The ninth round of 2016 season is on at Sachsenring circuit in three weeks time.
Khairul Idham Pawi (DNF)
“when you started the race from twenty-eighth position on the grid, you have take a risk to get a good result. That’s what I did today and I pushed very hard from the beginning. I moved up to twentieth in the opening lap and when I went into turn1, I lost front and crashed. It’s a great pity because in the warm up we fixed the problem that we had yesterday and our bike worked very good in the race. Anyway we try hard again in Sachsenring and everything will go better.”
Tadayuki Okada - Team Manager
“In this weekend, we did not make a good start on Friday and we missed good grid position. As a result, Pawi had to struggle and crashed in early stages. We are disappointed not to have taken any points in these three races. For the next race in Sachsenring, we believe Pawi will get points if only he finish the race. To make it happen, we have to try to hard to find good setup and support our riders.”
KTM rider Andrea Migno takes career first Moto3 podium at Assen
8th Rd. Moto3 2016 – TT Circuit Assen (NED)
Italian riders dominated an action-filled Moto3 race at the TT Assen on Sunday with KTM rider Andrea Migno (Sky Racing Team VR46) finishing third for a career best finish. Andrea Bagnaia won the race with Fabio Di Giannantonio in second for an all-Italian sweep.
Andrea Migno in fact crossed the line in second place after a photo finish with Bagnaia but race officials then bumped him down to third after what they deemed was an illegal overtaking move in the final straight. Migno’s teammate Romano Fenati was a race leader for much of the 22-lap contest and finished fourth. Nicolo Bulega, the third member of the VR46 squad crossed the line in seventh. KTM riders Joan Mir and Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Bo Bendsneyder, competing on his home circuit, were 8-9 for what was Bendsneyder’s best ever result.
Migno passed Fenati in the closing stages of the race and looked a winner with just 200 meters to the line. Speaking after the race he said: “With 200 meters to go to the checkered flag I was at 120%. I passed on the curb in the last corner and I took a risk because I braked very strong. I’m very happy because I was fast all weekend and I feel I have been strong. This podium is very important for me and for my team. I work very hard and I never give up.”
The race, which was tightly fought throughout and for the first two thirds between a group of 13 riders separated by just two seconds, took a dramatic turn in the 16th lap. The lead constantly changed back and forth between about five riders and championship leader Brad Binder of Red Bull KTM Ajo was a major podium contender throughout. But then he almost lost control of his KTM RC250 GP after a brief, too close encounter with Migno. Binder made an impressive save but ran off the track onto the wet grass and rejoined the race back at 13th place. Returning to the fray with wet and muddy tires, the South African then had to ride out the last six laps with caution and finally finished in 12th place, just over 12 seconds off the winning pace. Binder still salvaged four points and advances to a 48-point lead in the championship, now at its half way mark. It was the first time this season that he has not finished on the podium.
Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup Race 1
In desperately slippery conditions pole man Raúl Fernández won a shortened Race 1 at Assen. The 15-year-old Spaniard had already settled into a nice rhythm at the head of the field when the chasing pack of three all slid off together. Eight seconds behind, Marc Garcia and Ai Ogura took second and third.
While those around him made mistakes Fernández rode the perfect race. “From the start it felt strange but from the second or third lap I found my rhythm and was comfortable on the bike. After halfway I knew that I had a big lead and when it started to rain more I used my head and took it easy. With more rain the good feeling was gone, it was a lot more slippery and I couldn’t brake or accelerate as hard. It is great to have my first win here, I love the track and it was a hard race. I dedicate the win to Luis Salom and his family,” added the Madrid native who moved into third place in the championship chase.
PRESS RELEASE 2016
Gran Premio Motul TT Assen 2016 – RACE
17′ Darryn Binder (distacco dal vincitore 36″919)
22′ Danny Webb (distacco dal vincitore 1’04″271)
Only a mistake at the last round and Darryn Binder has lost some precious places and important points for him and for the Team Platinum Bay. Daz sign a good race and he is improving his feeling with the season.
Webb end his race at the last place, but his future in the Team will be decide only after the second test in program at Gp of Germany the next time