By Lisa Lewis
Maverick Vinales took victory on his Blusens Avintia (FTR Honda) for round nine of the Moto3 Championship at Mugello on Sunday, cutting Sandro Cortese's championship lead to nine points.
Red Bull KTM Ajo's Cortese, scoring his eighth podium finish from nine starts this year, had shadowed Vinales for the entire race when championship contenders Cortese and Vinales along with Fenati broke away with seven laps to go to fight for the podium positions to the line.
The German, finishing third, said in parc ferme that this had been his plan from the off, while race winner Vinales said “I don't have a plan, the race is difficult...I am so happy.”
Rookie Romano Fenati pulled out all the stops for Team Italia FMI (FTR Honda) to finish second after fighting for his home grand prix victory.
He said his podium finish felt “fantastic” and becomes the first Italian to finish on the podium in the lightweight class of GP racing since Simone Corsi in the 125cc class in 2008.
The leading group had initially comprised of seven bikes with Vazquez, Rins, Kent and Antonelli having all been in with a shout of winning until late in the race, all finding themselves at the front at some point.
After much position shuffling Antonelli finished the race fourth for San Carlo Gresini Moto3 (FTR Honda) with British rider Danny Kent fifth on his Red Bull KTM Ajo, Efren Vazquez was sixth for JHK Laglisse (FTR Honda).
Alex Rins proved to be a slipstreaming expert using the technique to his advantage to place his Estrella Galicia 0,0 Suter Honda in an eventual seventh, Jakub Kornfeil for Redox-Ongetta-Centro seta won the race long battle with early leader Zulfahmi Khairuddin (AirAsia-Sic-Ajo) and the experienced Hector Faubel (Mapfre Aspar Kalex KTM) in the chasing group completing the top ten.
Niklas Ajo(TT Motion Events Racing)finished 11th with Alexis Masbou (Caretta Technology) 12th and Adrian Martin 13th for the JHK Laglisse team. Wildcard riders Kevin Calia and Michael Ruben Rinaldi were the remaining points scorers in 14th and 15th respectively.
Danny Webb finished in 20th position aboard the Mahindra.
Frenchman Louis Rossi crashed out on the second lap, nearly taking Kent with him, while Portuguese rider Miguel Oliveira also failed to go the distance crashing out from eighth position.
Moretti, Salom, Moncayo, Sissis, Folger and Iwema all also failed to finish the race.
The Moto3 Championship now takes a break as the lightweight classes do not race at Laguna Seca, their next race weekend is Indianapolis 17-19 August.