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Moto2: Iannone fights off Luthi for win in Catalunya

3 June 2012

UPDATE: Marc Marquez initially received a one-minute post-race penalty, dropping him to 23rd place, but this was overturned on appeal.

By Lisa Lewis

Andrea Iannone translated his best qualifying since Qatar into his first victory of the season at a busy Catalan Moto2 race.

The Speed Master racer took victory over Swiss Interwetten rider Thomas Luthi, the two being clear of Marc Marquez who finished third after a collision with Pol Espargaro.

Title favouite Marquez caused the biggest talking point when - after a great save on his CatalunyaCaixa sponsored Repsol Suter - he pulled his bike across and into Pol Espargaro, who had dived for a gap on the inside of the track.

The resulting contact sent the Pons HP 40 Tuenti rider into a heavy fall and the incident was 'under investigation' by race direction. Marquez used the press conference to apologise for the accident, adding he had not been aware of Espargaro on the inside of him.

Iannone, Marquez, Luthi and Espargaro had formed the leading quartet fairly early on, then pulled away from the rest of the field, Iannone finding himself at the front of the group for most of the race.

Espargaro's team mate Tito Rabat had a lonely ride in fourth for the Pons HP 40 Tuenti team,Simone Corsi crossed the line fifth for the Came IodaRacing Project.

Japanese rider Takaaki Nakagami made up for a poor start picking his way through the field aboard the Italtrans Kalex to finish in sixth while Domonique Aegerter had a strong race to place his Technomag-CIP seventh. Fellow Swiss rider Randy Krummenacher was just a fraction behind in eighth for GP Team Switzerland.

Mika Kallio finished ninth while team mate Scott Redding may not have matched his podium performance of Le Mans but was still the top finishing British rider, completing the top ten for the Marc VDS Team.

Johann Zarco continued his Moto2 transition with an 11th place for the JIR Team, while Bradley Smith finished in 12th for Tech3 Racing.

Toni Elias was looking strong when he crashed his Mapfre Aspar out of sixth position with 7 laps remaining.

Mike Di Meglio, Julian Simon and Briton Gino Rea were all involved in an opening lap incident at turn two, Claudio Corti was also affected, but unlike the others managed to rejoin the race for the Italtrans team, eventually finishing 13th.

Roberto Rolfo had a ride through penalty for a jump start at the start of the race on his Technomag-CIP Suter, he failed to finish the race.

The Moto2 championship continues in two weeks time at Silverstone for the British grand prix.


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