2016 Catalunya Moto2 Results
With the death of Luis Salom in the forefront of everyone’s mind, the 28-rider Moto2 grid got down to work Sunday for the Catalunya Grand Prix.
Due to Salom’s crash at turn 12, the Catalunya-Barcelona Circuit’s was re-routed, and one rider immediately adapted to this layout – Ajo Motorsports’ Johann Zarco. The Frenchman qualified just ahead of Pagina Amarillas HP 40’s Alex Rins.
These two were immediate favorites, but would get shuffled back a few positions upon the start. Both riders battled, and made their way to the front later in the race. Zarco eventually took the lead on lap 17 of 23, and from there was untouchable.
Zarco earned the win by 4.180 seconds ahead of Rins, and 9.313 seconds ahead of IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia’s Takaaki Nakagami. This was Zarco’s third win of 2016 Moto2, and he moved up in the points with 108 – eight behind Moto2 series’ leader Rins.
Following the race, Zarco expressed his thoughts on the death of Salom: “It has been a very hard weekend emotionally because of the loss of Luis. The pole position yesterday was important and I wanted to dedicate that to him, and this win is very nice because all the Moto2 riders were able to pay tribute to him on the podium. We all knew that this race was for Luis, to honour him. It was the best way to end the weekend.”
When Catalunya Moto2 began, Tom Luthi (Garage Plus Interwetten) led into Turn 1, followed by Nakagami. But their time up front was short; by the end of lap one Rins was soon pass followed by Zarco.
Thee reigning Moto2 Champion Zarco was engaged in a battle with Rins for the podium, the gap under a third of a second throughout.
But on lap 17, Zarco took the lead for the first time, and was untouchable. Rins was unable to battle with Zarco at the end, and had to settle for second, with Nakagami earning a lonely third.
Luthi was forced to battle with Hafizh Syahrin (Petronas Raceline Malaysia), but had to settle for fifth behind Syrahrin.
Sixth went to the man leading the points heading into Catalunya Moto2 – Federal Oil Gresini Moto2’s Sam Lowes. Rounding out the top 10 were Jonas Folger (Dynavolt Intact GP), Miguel Oliveira (Leopard Racing), Axel Pons (AGR Team) and Marcel Schrotter (AGR Team).
Estrella Galicia 0,0 Galicia Marc VDS’ Alex Marquez, but the younger brother of two-time MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez crashed out on lap 12.
Lap three saw Simone Corsi (Speed Up Racing) and Lorenzo Baldassarri (Forward Team) come together at Turn 15, Corsi trying to force a gap. The incident was looked at by Race Direction, ruled a racing incident, Moto2 reports.
The series now breaks for two weeks ahead of the Assen TT GP.