Tony Arbolino looked comfortable once out in front as his rivals tumbled as Moto2 were the first class to battle the windy conditions at the Moto2 Americas Grand Prix, round four of the championship.

His first season at Elf Marc VDS had gotten off to a solid start, in the top ten so far at every round with a best of fifth at the opener at Qatar.

Having lined up fourth on the grid, the Italian inherited the lead as the front two riders fell out of contention and didn’t look back, smooth and in control for the race duration, taking the chequerd flag 3.439 s ahead of second place.

It is Arbolino’s first podium - arriving in style with a dominant Moto2 win. He was waved over the line and congratulated  by team-mate Sam Lowes who was already out of the race but happy to see his colleague take a first victory. 

 

Jake Dixon had been running in second when it was all change at the front, but Ai Ogura took advantage of the British rider running wide after a false neutral with seven laps remaining and held position, claiming second spot on the rostrum for Idemitsu Honda Team Asia.

Dixon had a huge advantage over the riders behind, so when he was not able to reel back in the Japanese rider, he wound his performance back just enough to ensure he brought home an emotional third - The Shimoko GasGas Aspar rider’s first podium finish.

What happened to Celestino Vietti and Aron Canet?

Arriving in Austin leading the championship, with an almost perfect track record of three podiums, including two wins, the Mooney VR46 rider had been in fine form.

Looking uneasy and off the pace at the start of the weekend, the Italian had to come through Q1 after a tough time in practice, where he then went on to find something in qualifying, battling to second on the grid.

Vietti then had a crash at turn six on lap five, a strange fall where his Kalex just slipped away, echoing a fall he had earlier in the weekend in practice.

The number thirteen holds on to his championship lead, with his tally stuck at 70 as then race leader Aron Canet, who at the time held a lead of around a second, lost control of his Flexbox HP40 bike despite his almost rodeo like efforts to prevent his spill at turn seven. Ai Ogura moves into second overall after his performace in the race.

Heartbroken Beaubier crashes out of home GP on last lap

Starting from pole - the first American to do so in any class since Ben Spies in MotoGP back in 2010 - meant the Californian was set up for success at COTA. 

Kitted out with new helmet and leathers and a stars and stripes livery, his ride was not quite on for the American dream but was on course to be a best finish to date taking over fourth from Marcel Schrotter late in the rate in a relentless performance.

The dream came to a crashing halt as the number six fell away and out of contention on the final lap with just two corners remaining.

That allowed Schrotter, who had gambled on the hard tyre option to match his riding style and Liqui Moly Intact GP bike, to retake fourth just before the finish line.

Jorge Navarro had a long lap penalty to serve for crashing under waved yellows in practice, his bike landing right next to the already gravel bound Sam Lowes.

Undeterred, the Flexbox HP40 rider immediatley set about a recovery which took him all the way to fifth by the close of the race.

Jeremy Alcoba (Liqui Moly Intact GP) looked at ease around COTA to  smash his best finish so far in his rookie season with sixth place having come no higher than 14th so far this season.

Bo Bensneyder (Pertamina Mandalika SAG Team) was next to see the chequered flag for  seventh, Ahead of the top placing home rider as Joe Roberts picked off the opposition to climb to eighth for Italtrans.

Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) had a horrible time in qualifying, his Q2 crash seeing him start 18th. The Spaniard also set about slicing through the pack ahead sfter a poor start for a determined ninth.

Barry Baltus completed the top ten for RW Racing GP.

Albert Arenas (Shimoko Gas Gas Aspar) also struugled at the start and was one of several riders forced wide on the first lap, he staged his own comeback to take eleventh, ahead of Marcos Ramirez in twelfth for MV Agusta Forward Racing - the best of the non-Kalex riders.

The remaining points on offer went to rookie Manuel  Gonzalez (Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team) in 13th, his best result to date, fellow rookie Filip Salac (Gresini Racing) in 14th and Romano Fenati (Mb Conveyors Speed Up), a previous winner in Austin in Moto3, equalling his best finish of the season in 15th.

Lorenzo Dalla Porta and Sean Dylan Kelly were the only other riders to complete the race distance.

Huge first lap crash takes out five

Lap one brought instant drama when Somkiat Chantra made a huge move from too far back, collecting Sam Lowes. Right behind them Fermin Aldeguer, Gabriel Rodrigo and Zonta van den Goorburgh all atngeld and joined them in the gravel.

Simone Corsi was next to exit with just four laps complete, completing a crash filled weekend to forget for the Italian.

Pedro Acosta fell on the same lap in dramatic style, thankfully walking away unscathed as his bike slid away and across the track, with the pack behind all missing bike and rider.

Alessandro Zaccone and Niccolo Antonelli, who had struggled with illness since arriving in the united States, both retired to the pits.

Moto2 returns on the weekend of the 22-24 April when the paddock arrives in Portugal for the Algarve Grand Prix.