M2: Japanese GP: Team Aspar race report

The Japanese Moto2 race at Motegi was a dry contest. The relief at the absence of falling rain was only matched by that for the absence of falling riders -something all too common in the early stages of the races this year. A 1.15pm start was ...

The Japanese Moto2 race at Motegi was a dry contest. The relief at the absence of falling rain was only matched by that for the absence of falling riders -something all too common in the early stages of the races this year. A 1.15pm start was slightly later than normal, but riders Julian Simon and Toni Elias had no delay about them. They escaped from the rest of the pack early on, with the two up in front on their own after four laps. It finished with Elias victorious and Simon second, ensuring that the inaugural Moto2 title will go to a Spaniard. The two are the current top pairing in the intermediate series.

Mapfre Aspar man Julian Simon was the same consistent rider that has been so impressive in the past three races, although his first win in Moto2 is still yet to materialise. The Spaniard has now taken second place at the last three rounds of the series and is the favourite for the championship runners-up spot should Elias claim the title. He was on the champion elect's tail for almost the entire 23-lap race, but his attempt at an overtake on the last lap didn't quite come off and he was forced to settle for second.

Teammate Mike Di Meglio began the race in nineteenth and with hopes of a comeback. However, a show start and a lack of grip put an end to his aspirations and he was left treading water for the duration. He eventually placed eighteenth.

The World Championship continues next weekend in Malaysia, part two of a three-race run of flyaway races.

2nd Julian Simon:
"I think that we worked very well all weekend in practice and today in the race. We have learnt a lot about the bike and have found out what we need to go a bit faster. I'm happy, because we are progressing well, have four consecutive podiums under our belts and have been close to a win. I tried to stop Toni escaping, keeping close to his tail, but there was no clear chance to overtake him. Let's say that we were riding very similarly in a lot of sections, but that the equality of the engines made it too tough to overtake. On the last lap I was pushing more in order to sneak past, but I made a mistake and he got just far enough ahead. I am happy with the result and with our work, as this result spurs me on for Malaysia."

18th Mike Di Meglio:
"Today was a rather difficult race. I didn't have a good start, but at least I could try to follow the group ahead of me. I had problems from the beginning, because my rear tyre lacked grip. I thought that my feeling for it would improve as the race progressed, but it wasn't the case. It was a day in which I had to dig deep in order to preserve positions. It is a shame to finish a weekend like this, because I wasn't able to come back. I hope to be back in the points in Malaysia."

-source: team aspar

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Toni Elias , Julian Simon