2015 Sepang Moto2 Results
Though he claimed the 2015 Moto2 title two rounds ago at Motegi in Japan, Johann Zarco showed no signs of slowing Sunday during the Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix.
The Frenchman battled with Derendinger Racing Interwetten’s Thomas Luthi for most of the race, but was able to beat him to the checkered flag at Sepang International Circuit by a mere 0.598 of a second. Earning the final podium nine seconds behind Zarco was AGR Team Kalex’s Jonas Folger. This was Zarco’s eight win and 14th podium of 2015 Moto2.
With his win, the Ajo Motorpsort’s pilot has now equaled the record of 14 podiums in an intermediate season with Marc Marquez (2012) and Esteve “Tito” Rabat (2014).
Johann Zarco says: “From the beginning I felt good, but Luthi was even better than I was. What I did was try to follow him as best I could; things were a little different than I thought, so I tried to stay calm and not even look back because I had a very good pace. I figured that if I stuck to him it would be the two of us fighting for first and second place and that was how it ended up being.
“From the middle of the race I saw that he was faster than me; I made a few mistakes and I tried to keep calm on the bike. At the end I was able to catch him and on the last lap I tried to overtake him to finally cross the line first. This latest win is fantastic, and I am very happy. It has been a very long three weeks and it’s been hard mentally and physically. I’ve won this race and now I can rest for a week before Valencia.”
Starting from the pole, Luthi got to turn one first, but was passed by Zarco on turn four. Luthi countered, and the two began pulling away from the rest of the field. At one point Luthi had opened up a four-second lead on Zarco. Just when it looked like he’d earn the race, Zarco attached, and took the lead on turn 2 of the final lap.
Zarco went on to earn the 10th win of his GP career, followed by Luthi, who earned his thired podium of the season. While dicing with Folger for the final podium, Paginas Amarillas HP40’s Alex Rins, Folger crashed out at turn nine. This allowed Folger to finish in a lonely third.
Idemitsu Honda Team Asia’s Takaaki Nakagami made it back-to-back fourth places with Forward Racing’s Lorenzo Baldassarri in suite. Paginas Amarillas Luis Salom earned sixth after a late-race charge, just four-tenths ahead of Sandro Cortese on the Dynavolt Intact GP Kalex in seventh.
Local rider Hafizh Syahrin (Petronas Raceline Malaysia) rode brilliantly from 18th on the grid to finish in eighth, with Simone Corsi (Forward Racing) and Xavier Simeon (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) completing the top 10.
Speed Up Racing’s Sam Lowes was running in 7th when he appeared to have issues, and started dropping down the order like a stone, before recovering towards the end. The Brit eventually crossed the line in 13th, MotoGP reports.
There were also crashes for Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and Marcel Schrotter (Tech 3) while EG 0,0 Marc VDS’s Tito Rabat missed the Malaysian GP to allow him to focus on recovering from the broken radius in his left arm, MotoGP reports.
The 2015 Moto2 Championship now breaks for two weeks ahead of the season finale at Valencia in Spain. The 2015 Moto2 Champ Zarco has 343 points, with Rins following in second with 214. Third in points is the reigning Moto2 Champion Rabat with 2016.