Assen Moto3: Foggia beats Garcia to win by 0.078s
Leopard Honda’s Dennis Foggia won a tense Moto3 Dutch Grand Prix by 0.078 seconds, while championship leader Pedro Acosta was fourth a day after being hospitalised with a back injury.
There was drama before the race had even got underway, after Race Direction slapped six riders – Jaume Masia, Lornzo Fellon, Yuki Kuni, Andi Farid Izdihar, Joel Kelso and Takuma Matsuyama – with ride through penalties for irresponsible riding.
Romano Fenati also had a double long-lap penalty to serve after an incident in practice and tried to break away early on when he grabbed the holeshot at the start.
The Max Racing rider served his first penalty loop on lap three, relinquishing the lead to Leopard Racing’s Dennis Foggia for the first time.
Fenati came out in ninth after his first penalty and dropped to 14th after his second, though would work his way back into podium contention in the latter stages.
Foggia was passed by the Aspar GASGAS rider Sergio Garcia at the Stekkenwal right-hander on the fourth lap, though he would found his way back into the lead at the end of the following tour.
Championship leader Acosta was declared fit to race after suffering an upper back injury in a horrible collision in FP3 on Saturday, which forced him out of qualifying and into 18th on the grid.
By the end of lap five Ajo KTM rider Acosta had worked his way to eight and quickly bridged the gap to the leading seven, dragging the gaggle of riders behind him along to create a lead group of 13 at one stage.
Garcia and Foggia would trade the lead on several occasions as the 22-lap race wore on, with Fenati returning to the front of the pack on lap 19 when Foggia made a mistake at Stekkenwal.
But the Leopard Honda rider regrouped and was back at the front by the end of the tour, before upping his pace to try and break away,
Foggia led Garcia and Fenati at the start of the final lap, with SIC58 Honda’s Tatsuki Suzuki just cut adrift by over four tenths in fourth.
Into the final sector Foggia had built up enough of a gap to protect him against attack into the Geert Timmer chicane, with the Leopard rider taking his second win of 2021 by 0.078 seconds from Garcia, with Fenati completing the podium despite his penalties.
Darryn Binder recovered from a massive moment at the fast Ramshoek left-hander late on to take the chequered flag in fourth – though the Petronas Sprinta rider was docked three spots for exceeding track limits, promoting Acosta to fourth.
Binder’s penalty promoted Suzuki and the sister Petronas Sprinta Honda of McPhee up to fifth and sixth, with Gresini’s Gabriel Rodrigo eighth.
Xavier Artigas was ninth on the second Leopard Honda, with poleman Jeremy Alcoba (Gresini) a distant 10th after a crash for Snipers Honda’s Andrea Migno and Avintia’s Niccolo Antonelli at the Strubben hairpin on lap 10 broke up the lead group.
Antonelli did remount to finish 14th, while Migno pulled out.
Garcia’s second has slightly cut Acosta’s championship lead to a still sizable 48 points heading into the five-week summer break.
Assen Moto3 - Race results:
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