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125: Simon wins race and title at Phillip Island
18 October 2009
Julian Simon won his fifth race of the 125cc season with a last lap pass on team-mate Bradley Smith during Sunday's Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island - and in doing so wrapped up the 2009 world championship with two rounds to go.
Simon, who needed to beat Smith and Nicolas Terol to take his first world title on Sunday, finished the first lap in eighth position - behind both his rivals.
By the time Smith took the lead on lap ten of 23, Simon was still at the tail of the lead group in seventh, but quickly worked his way forward to take the lead from Smith with ten laps to go.
The two Aspar riders then broke away at the front, with Smith just a tenth ahead as the last lap began. Simon made his title winning pass with a neat inside move into the MG turn, which left Smith with no chance to respond.
2009 is Simon's seventh full season in grand prix racing, but first since returning to the 125cc class after two years - without even a podium - in 250. As well as his five wins, the 22-year-old has taken five additional podiums from the 14 rounds, plus six pole positions.
Simon celebrated with a world champion's t-shirt, plus an elaborate tiger helmet.
Two seconds behind the Aspar riders, Sandro Cortese snatched the final podium position - his second in as many races - from pole sitter and fellow Derbi rider Pol Espargaro on the run to the line. Cortese had been 17th at the end of the first lap!
Race results - Phillip Island:
1. Simon (Aprilia)
2. Smith (Aprilia) +0.313sec
3. Cortese (Derbi) +2.057sec
4. Espargaro (Derbi) +2.161sec
5. Corsi (Aprilia) +2.330sec
6. Terol (Aprilia) +3.239sec
7. Vazquez (Derbi) +3.290sec
8. Iannone (Aprilia) +12.820sec
9. Marquez (KTM) +22.355sec
10. Gadea (Aprilia) +22.602sec
11. Redding (Aprilia) +29.181sec
13. Webb (Aprilia) +29.222sec
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