Toni Elias: Leads Moto2, Leaves France
Moto2 Le Mans
Toni Elías opened up an 18-point lead at the top of the Moto2 World Championship standings with his second win of the season. The Spanish rider led a podium completed by Julian Simon and Simone Corsi, in a race that was extremely eventful in its opening stages.
Elias said that he wanted to win at Le Mans and the Spaniard was true to his word today, battling from the second row after a crash in qualifying yesterday to dominate the race from the front.
Making a rapid start from seventh on the grid, Elias took the early lead, but Alex Debón was soon in front. However, the Valencian rider was penalized for a jump-start and had to take a ride through penalty as he lost first position.
Yuki Takahashi crashed out from fourth, and pole position man Kenny Noyes suffered the same disappointment.
At the head of the race Elias, Jules Cluzel and Simon established a break, but disaster struck from the Frenchman Cluzel when he lost the front of his bike.
Championship leader at the start of the race, Shoya Tomizawa ran off twice, first as the result of De Rosa’s crash which forced him wide, then of his own accord, bringing down Mattia Pasini too.
As Elias stretched out his lead and Simón shored up second, Andrea Iannone and Corsi scrapped for third behind, with the latter coming out on top to claim his first Moto2 podium.
Elias’ teammate, Valdimir Ivanov made progress in the race, starting from 34th on the grid but finishing 21st as he continues to move closer to the points.
Toni Elias (Moto2: 1st Place) says: "I’m really happy with this because we had a tough day yesterday after the crash. Thanks to the team I was able to make it up from 41st position to qualify seventh by the end of the session and that allowed me to make a good start."
"I ran with the front group and when the tires started to go off I was able to manage the situation better than the other guys and secure the win. It is my second consecutive victory and I’m leading the championship but I don’t want to think about that just now."
"It is important to take things race by race without thinking too much about the ultimate objective. I want to thank the team and Moriwaki because they’re all doing a great job. "
Vladimir Ivanov (Moto2: 21st Place ) says: "I’m really pleased for my team-mate because he has been great with me and I’m also satisfied with my own result. I have taken another small step forward here and now I am more certain than ever that I can soon be challenging for points in this championship. "
Fausto Gresini says: "I have to say that wasn’t an easy race because there were a lot of crashes and the unusually hot weather here at Le Mans didn’t help but Toni was well prepared, he knew how to manage the race and he won a wonderful Grand Prix."
"We are really happy for him because he deserves it and he is now almost fully recovered from his injuries. We were worried when he crashed yesterday but he recovered his confidence in the bike quickly, the team did a great job too and this result is fruit of all that hard work so my congratulations go to all the guys."
"Now we lead the championship but there is a long way to go and we can’t start dreaming. We have to keep working, take each round as it comes and we’ll start to worry about the end result later."
Moto2 Results and Points | Le Mans
|SPA||Mapfre Aspar Team||Suter||150.0||+1.336|
|ITA||Fimmco Speed Up||Speed Up||149.8||+4.880|
|HUN||Fimmco Speed Up||Speed Up||149.4||+13.293|
|SPA||Tenerife 40 Pons||Pons Kalex||149.4||+13.415|
|THA||Thai Honda PTT Singha SAG||Bimota||149.3||+14.294|
|GER||Viessmann Kiefer Racing||Suter||148.8||+23.503|
|GBR||Marc VDS Racing Team||Suter||148.8||+23.959|
|ITA||Caretta Technology Race Dept||I.C.P.||148.6||+26.023|