Teruel Moto3: Masia takes Honda's 800th win in thriller

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Teruel Moto3: Masia takes Honda's 800th win in thriller
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Leopard’s Jaume Masia won a thrilling Teruel Grand Prix to claim back-to-back Moto3 Aragon wins, as Albert Arenas extended his championship lead despite missing the podium.

Masia’s first win since Argentina 2019 last weekend made him Honda’s 100th winner in grand prix racing, with his second Aragon triumph – coming after a penultimate corner pass – giving HRC its 800th victory across all grand prix classes.

Tony Arbolino on his return from a COVID-19-related absence last weekend grabbed the holeshot from second on the grid, though poleman Raul Fernandez immediately retaliated at the first corner. 

Arbolino got shoved back by the VR46 KTM of Celestino Vietti and championship leader Arenas through the next few turns, before the latter hit the front for the first time at the penultimate corner. 

The lead group in the early laps was over 20 bikes, with the battle at the front frantic with the likes of Vietti, Fernandez and his Ajo KTM teammate Kaito Toba taking turns leading the field.

Arenas scythed past Toba at Turn 1 on lap 10 to retake the lead, and resisted several attempts by Masia over the new few tours.

The speed of Arenas’ Aspar-run KTM proved tough for Masia to overhaul on his Leopard Honda on the straight, while the former’s strength in braking made him almost impossible to overtake. 

But Masia finally made a move stick into Turn 1 having nailed his run from the final corner on lap 17, though Arenas would be back ahead six turns later. 

Masia got ahead of Arenas into Turn 1 at the start of the final lap, but once again Arenas struck back at Turn 7 and looked like he’d hold onto his lead as he got a brilliant exit onto the back straight. 

But the Leopard rider blasted through into the penultimate corner, opening the door for Tech 3’s Ayumu Sasaki and Toba to come through on Arenas too. 

Masia held on by 0.051 seconds on the run to the line to get himself back into championship contention, with Sasaki claiming his and Tech 3’s maiden Moto3 podium.

Toba hasn’t had a top six since last year’s French GP, with his best result a ninth in 2020. 

But the KTM rider made it two Japanese riders on the podium in third, with Arenas fourth after being mugged through the final bends. 

Vietti completed the top five ahead of Petronas Sprinta’s John McPhee, who came from 17th on the grid, with his sister Tech 3 KTM of Deniz Oncu, CIP's Darryn Binder, Honda Team Asia’s Ai Ogura and the Snipers Honda of Arbolino completing the top 10. 

Despite missing the podium, Ogura’s ninth means Arenas’ championship lead has opened up to 19 over the Japanese rider with just three races to go.

Vietti is a further point adrift in third, while Masia is now 24 points behind in fourth.

Despite the raging dogfight throughout the race, only two riders failed to finish when Tatsuki Suzuki crashed exiting Turn 9 on the last lap in front of EG 0,0 Honda’s Sergio Garcia and left him with no choice but to hit the stricken SIC58 bike.

Race results:

Cla # Rider Bike Laps Gap
1 5 Spain Jaume Masia Honda 19  
2 71 Japan Ayumu Sasaki KTM 19 0.051
3 27 Japan Kaito Toba KTM 19 0.152
4 75 Spain Albert Arenas KTM 19 0.296
5 13 Italy Celestino Vietti Ramus KTM 19 0.331
6 17 United Kingdom John McPhee Honda 19 0.372
7 53 Turkey Deniz Öncü KTM 19 0.583
8 40 South Africa Darryn Binder KTM 19 0.772
9 79 Japan Ai Ogura Honda 19 0.955
10 14 Italy Tony Arbolino Honda 19 2.259
11 21 Spain Alonso López Husqvarna 19 2.489
12 25 Spain Raúl Fernández KTM 19 2.493
13 12 Czech Republic Filip Salač Honda 19 2.520
14 2 Argentina Gabriel Rodrigo Honda 19 2.686
15 52 Spain Jeremy Alcoba Honda 19 2.745
16 7 Italy Dennis Foggia Honda 19 2.895
17 99 Spain Carlos Tatay KTM 19 3.019
18 16 Italy Andrea Migno KTM 19 3.622
19 55 Italy Romano Fenati Husqvarna 19 5.448
20 82 Italy Stefano Nepa KTM 19 5.620
21 70 Belgium Barry Baltus KTM 19 5.680
22 23 Italy Niccolo Antonelli Honda 19 6.103
23 6 Japan Ryusei Yamanaka Honda 19 16.543
24 50 Switzerland Jason Dupasquier KTM 19 21.606
25 92 Japan Yuki Kunii Honda 19 21.716
26 9 Italy Davide Pizzoli KTM 19 21.812
27 89 Malaysia Khairul Idham Pawi Honda 19 32.799
28 73 Austria Maximilian Kofler KTM 19 33.600
  24 Japan Tatsuki Suzuki Honda 18 1 Lap
  11 Spain Sergio García Honda 18 1 Lap

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About this article

Series Moto3
Event Aragon II
Author Lewis Duncan