Raul Fernandez had a runaway victory at the front of the Moto3 Portuguese Grand Prix as the title battle raged behind with Albert Arenas taking the world championship crown from twelfth.

The Red Bull KTM Ajo rider started from pole, enjoyed a lead of almost ten seconds before easing off in the closing laps to lead over the line by 5.810s for his second win of the season.

Dennis Foggia claimed second despite needing to serve a double long lap penalty along with team-mate Jaume Masia in the race on his Honda for Leopard.

Jeremy Alcoba, already rookie of the season heading into Portimao, claimed his first podium finish after sitting in second for much of the race for Kommerling Gresini.

The battle for the championship may not have featured a podium finish but was equally as exciting as the action ahead.

Albert Arenas came into the race with the advantage and initially featured at the front chasing down Fernandez. 

The Gaviota Aspar rider did not have things easy as he lined up with rival Ai Ogura on the grid, with Tony Arbolino a distant 27th.

He was handed early competition from the Leopard pair before they ducked in to begin their penalties and Ogura made it his business to stay ahead of the Spaniard.

Arbolino, who missed a round after travelling on a plane with a Coronavirus case, pulled his Rivacold Snipers bike up ten places in just over a lap and soon arrived in the frantic lead group all battling away behind Fernandez.

There was contact between himself and Arenas as they ran a truly fiesty, competitive race. 

Arenas still needed to survive a late track limits warning and run out on the green on the final lap, where he lost places on his way to finish the season Moto3 Champion.He celebrated with an ice cream stand on track.

Abolino made up some extra positions after late falls for Tatsuki Suzuki and Jaume Masia , but couldn’t quite catch Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) who finished fourth, leaving the Italian fifth and four points short of Arenas.

Ogura faded slightly before getting a second wind and climbing back to eighth for Honda Team Asia, also four points off in the race to the crown.

Ahead of the Japanese rider to the line were Darryn Binder, making up the places from 18th on the grid to sixth for CIP Green Power. Celestino Vietti (Sky Racing Team VR46) started a slightly better 14th only to immediately drop out of the points places, he fought back for seventh.

It was a busy race for riders powering through the pack once in the rammed chasing group - Petronas Sprinta rider John McPhee finished his first ever race around the Algarve circuit in ninth, passing Denis Oncu (Red Bull KTM Tech 3, 10th) and Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse, 11th) in the closing stages.

Arenas was raced down to twelfth and last in that group in the run to the line, with Ayumu Sasaki (Red Bull KTM Tech 3), Carlos Tatay (Reale Avintia) and Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) next to find the flag to compelte the points places.

After spending the weekend learning the track behind his race winning brother Adrian Fernandez, in for the injured Filip Salac at Rivacold Snipers finished 18th on his debut.

There was drama for Gabriel Rodrigo before the race had even started. His bike wouldn’t start on the warm-up lap, he finished 27th.

Alonso Lopez crashed out after an eventful race, the Spaniard had a penalty heading into the race, which he served early on, then was handed a track limits warning and further long lap penalty before he crashed out with seven laps remaining.

 

Comments

Loading Comments...