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West wins, Smith podium in Qatar QMMF event
14 January 2013
Moto2 star Anthony West stole the limelight in the second round of the Qatar International Road Racing Championship.
Riding a Suzuki, West won both races from pole, beating 2013 MotoGP rookie Bradley Smith by 7.5s in the first outing.
Smith, who will make his premier-class race debut at the same Losail circuit on April 7, dropped from fourth to seventh before claiming the runner-up spot in a close battle with defending champion Alex Cudlin.
“I had some clutch problems and my start wasn't good,” said Smith. “I also made a mistake and ran off track. Then I had a good battle with Alex. I hope to solve the problems with the clutch and be closer to West...”
But Smith didn't see the end of race two due to mechanical problems, losing third gear while running second to West. West then romped to a massive 15.4s victory over Qatari rider Nasser Al Malki, who had been fourth in race one.
West, now officially confirmed as staying at QMMF for Moto2 this year, said: “I had a good feeling and tried to keep my rhythm and stay on the track as there was a horrible wind all day. I'm happy that I didn't have to fight too much because I got a good gap to the rest.”