Frenchman Arnaud Vincent scored his most impressive 125cc victory to date with a finely judged performance from the outside of the fourth row of the grid at a sun-drenched Donington Park circuit.

Race day dawned bright and sunny at Donington Park on Sunday and the hoards of British fans were treated to an excellent 125cc curtain-raiser that saw French Aprilia rider Arnaud Vincent take his second win of the year after fighting his way passed leading trio Daniel Pedrosa, Manuel Poggiali and Lucio Cecchinello in one fell swoop.

Vincent started quietly as Assen winner Pedrosa and Yuichi Ui shared the lead on the opening lap but he tagged onto the rear of an early race nine-bike breakaway that included Pedrosa, Ui, Cecchinello, Steve Jenkner, Masao Azuma, Joan Olive and Alex de Angelis.

By lap 7 of 26, leader Pedrosa had taken Poggiali, Cecchinello and Azuma with him and opened a gap back to the rest but Vincent quickly moved and by lap 11 he had snatched fourth from the Japanese veteran and soon closed in on the rear of the red Gilera.

Cecchinello assumed the lead shortly before lap ten and for the bulk of the race the leading quartet circulated together, Cecchinello leading Pedrosa, Poggiali and Vincent as the rest tailed away.

Things got interesting four laps from home when Pedrosa snatched the lead into Goddards only to lose it again half a lap later when Cecchinello committed himself far too deep going through the Old Hairpin. The Aprilia rider went wide forcing Pedrosa to check-up and Vincent shot through to move from fourth to first in the space of a couple of metres.

On lap 24 the fiery Cecchinello grabbed the lead back at McLeans only to run wide again and then seconds later threw his bike into the weeds at Coppice to end his day.

That left the leading trio to duke it out for the podium but despite a concerted last lap effort from Pedrosa, Vincent could not be matched and crossed the line for a joyous French victory on Bastille Day.

Neither Pedrosa nor Poggiali were happy with second and third places respectively although the defending 125cc Champion maintains his points lead over the Telefonica Jr Honda rider by 16 points with Vincent moving into third in the standings.

Behind all this excitement, Azuma had a lonely ride for much of the day and claimed fourth despite a late effort from Jenkner who eventually claimed fifth.

Joan Olive, Alex de Angelis and a faltering Yuichi Ui completed the top eight.

With 36 bikes starting, unsurprisingly the field underwent a considerable thinning-out process in the early laps with crashers aplenty however the rate of attrition was still not enough to get Chaz Davies into the points and he finished 16th, leading British finisher.

Of the British wildcards, Midge Smart crashed on the first lap and his Red Bull Rookie teammate Guy Fairbrother followed him out just after half distance. However Christian Elkin and Christopher Martin both made it to the finish in 21st and 22nd places respectively.


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