After the crowds were nicely warmed up by home heroes in the lightweight class, the intermediate one rewarded them with an all-Spanish podium and a well-received second victory of his rookie season for Pedro Acosta. The Moto3 champion showed off an impeccable pace as he outperformed his championship leading teammate and claimed victory by over two and a half seconds. Augusto Fernandez eventually dropped to the third step of the podium after a late move from Aron Canet, the bow-tie enthusiast claiming the familiar second place trophy for a sixth time this season.
Fernandez had made a solid start from pole position, ahead of Jake Dixon, Albert Arenas, Acosta and Canet, and quickly extended a whole second of advantage at the front by lap three. The chasing group led by Dixon had lost Alonso Lopez on the opening lap and Arenas one lap later but the likes of Canet, Acosta and Tony Arbolino were still in the mix, with Ai Ogura climbing into sixth after a sluggish start from eighth place on the grid. Acosta and Canet kept us entertained over the first few laps and the rookie eventually picked up the lead in the chasing group from Dixon by the end of lap four. Acosta was left with a 1.8 second gap to recover on his leading teammate, while Dixon dropped a couple more positions over the next lap and came under fire from Ogura.
By lap seven it started to look like we might still have a battle for victory, as Acosta had reduced the gap to Fernandez to under a second and was clawing back time at an alarming rate for the championship leader. His progress was briefly halted by a mistake at turn nine and Canet said thank you very much as he took second, but the rookie soon reclaimed the position, and the duo were glued to the back of Fernandez by lap nine. In those early stages, only Arbolino seemed to still have a chance to challenge the podium men, the Italian bridging the gap to the leaders by lap ten, while Dixon and Ogura led the pursuit almost two seconds back.
Acosta attacked his teammate to relieve him of the lead of the race that same lap, breezing past on the back straight, while Arbolino kept Canet entertained, the frequent exchanges giving the Red Bull KTM boys some breathing room at the front. However, a mistake from Arbolino with nine laps remaining cost him dearly and the Italian dropped out of podium contention by 1.5 seconds, allowing Canet to bridge the gap to the orange machines ahead.
Acosta continued to set a fast pace at the front, so hot that the youngster dropped his teammate by over a second with seven laps remaining, and Fernandez switched focus to defending second from a feisty Canet. Meanwhile, three seconds behind, Arbolino was dropping into the clutches of Ogura, the Japanese rider making some late progress after finally robbing Dixon of fifth a couple of laps earlier.
While Acosta’s advantage continued to grow until the chequered flag, Fernandez did his best to fend off Canet, who eventually attacked at the Reverse Corkscrew with three laps remaining. Fernandez seemed happy enough with third and didn't try to retaliate, although rival Ogura was limiting the damage further by challenging Arbolino for fourth. After a few exchanges until the very last lap, Ogura secured fourth ahead of the Italian, while a last lap tumble at turn 12 for Dixon allowed Fermín Aldeguer to inherit sixth position. Somkiat Chantra, Jorge Navarro, Joe Roberts and Celestino Vietti rounded out the top 10 – the Italian recovering some positions late in the race, having started 17th, but not enough to keep anywhere close to his title rivals.
Despite losing what looked like a likely victory at one point, Fernandez still extended his advantage in the world championship slightly, to seven points over Ogura. Canet recovers some ground for a 37-point deficit, while Vietti is a distant 52.
|12||19||Lorenzo Dalla Porta||Kalex||31.876|
|18||42||Marcos Ramirez||MV Agusta||45.314|
|19||24||Simone Corsi||MV Agusta||50.088|
|21||4||Sean Dylan Kelly||Kalex||62.499|
|84||Zonta Van Den Goorbergh||Kalex||11:37.3610|