Luthi

MotoGP Motegi 2014 race reports…

12/10/2014

make for some great reading if you couldn’t get up for 3am!

Embed from Getty Images

When you can’t find a repeat and you need to know what happened beside Marquez excellent championship win and Lorenzo’s racecraft – and lets face it Moto3 and Moto2 were EARLY if you were watching in Europe – here’s some of my race reports to give you a flavour of the action!

Moto3 had it all, with a six way battle and a final lap victory, for more on this in my race report (from 3am!) for crash.net here.

Moto2 had a breakaway and a chase, the race report for that, also at crash is here.

For a combined, shorter report you can also visit paddockchatter.com here.

Don’t forget it is also a great opportunity to talk, comment, like and tweet with other fans too!

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Image of the GP – Moto2 : If Redding wins we all win!

A celebration of a great win at my home race by local rider Scott Redding, an impressive and historic performance at Silverstone, complete with an odd wolf- in- gravel celebration, what more can you want for the future of the sport in the U.K.?

Was also lucky enough to have been in Donington when he was the 125cc winner back in 2008 as a fifteen year old…Marquez was third that race, now Scott is off to Gresini Honda will be great to see them battle again in the near future!

Redding silverstone win

No Spaniards, shocking! Briton Redding on the top spot with Takaaki Nakagami (2nd again!!) and a resurgent Tom Luthi.
Image via MotoGP.com for celebration by me and editorial use only, (fair use act)!

Moto2 and Moto3 Brno race reports online now!

Kallio wins in Brno

It’s been a while: Kallio takes first win since 2008
Image via Marc VDS

There was strong passes  in all classes in Brno, Marquez set yet more records in MotoGP, but where did MotoGP’s future stars come?

Salom was back to his old tricks in Moto3 with Mika Kallio making a welcome return to the top spot in the Czech Republic!

For a summary of events visit my round-up for PaddockChatter.com or for in depth race reports on crash.net for both Moto2 and Moto3click the links, where you can share comment like and tweet away with other race fans!

For an in depth look at the battle for the Moto2 title between Redding and Espargaro :

http://www.crash.net/motogp/news/194952/1/czech_moto2_espargaro_takes_five_redding_never_gave_up.html

Round-up: Moto2 & Moto3 – Redding storms to first Moto2 win, Vinales controls Moto3.

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      Redding on his way to his Maiden Moto2 win          Image: Marc VDS
 
For more on this story visit Paddock Chatter or for in depth coverage check out my full race reports for Moto2 and Moto3 at Crash.net, just click the links for more…
 
Moto3 had the best of the weather in Le Mans and got their race under way in officially dry conditions though the track was still damp and the sky poised for rain.
 
The championship leaders made a break at the front with Maverick Vinales, Jonas Folger, Alex Rins and Luis Salom moving away at the front.
 
It was Vinales who would time his move to perfection, picking the right moment to up the pace and gain his second win of the season in back to back races.
 
The victory at the scene of his first ever career win makes him the first rider to take two wins in moto3 this year, giving the Team Calvo rider a strong 13 point lead in the championship over Luis Salom.
 
Also making the French podium was Alex Rins who held his nerve to take second for Estrella Galicia, while the all-Spanish, all-KTM top podium was completed by Red Bull Ajo rider Salom.
 
Taking a chance on the softer option tyre proved a bad gamble for Mapfre Aspar’s Jonas Folger, it caused a few small errors meaning he had to settle for fourth.
 
Alex Marquez rode a steady race to put both the Estrella Galicia riders in the top five, he was followed across the line by Redox RW Racing’s Jakub Kornfeil who posted some of the fastest laps of the race to push forward to sixth.
 
Romano Fenati found some of his old form with a series of strong moves making him the highest placed Honda powered finisher in seventh for San Carlo Team Italia.
 
British rider John McPhee was just outside the top ten again for the Caretta Technology outfit, one place ahead of team-mate Jack Miller. Fellow Brit Danny Webb, who broke his foot in Saturday’s qualifying crash was not fit to race due to a concussion sustained in the accident.
 
Moto2 followed and was hit by the change of weather bringing the scheduled downpour and ending the race with 22 laps completed.
 
It was an excellent day for the Marc VDS team with Scott Redding taking his first ever Moto2 win, a first victory for the team.
 
The 20 year old Brit was joined on the all Kalex podium by his team-mate Mika Kallio, giving the Belgian team a one-two finish.
 
Belgian fans had even more to celebrate as Xavier Simeon scored the final podium spot for his Desguaces La Torre Maptaq team, beating home rider Johann Zarco, who at one point had lead the race, into fourth for the Came Iodaracing Project. The Frenchman was also the highest placing Suter rider.
 
Redding the only non-Spanish Grand Prix winner this season, and the first since Danny Kent won in 2012, now leads the championship by a hefty 24 points from Tito Rabat.
 
Swiss rider Dominique Aegerter had also been in with a podium shout but finished in fifth for the Technomag carXpert team.
 
Mike Di Meglio also faired well at home, the sole Motobi user finishing seventh for the Jir team.
 
The crashes in Moto2 were as notable as the excellent overtaking manoeuvres employed by Redding to hit the front.
 
After just a handful of laps the Tuenti HP 40 team riders Pol Espargaro, the championship favourite, and Tito Rabat, who entered the race leading the championship, both slid out simultaneously at the same corner. They were soon followed by Takaaki Nakagami, who was leading the race by more than three seconds at the time for the Italtrans team.
 
There were also crashes for Aspar’s Nico Terol and Interwetten Paddock man Tom Luthi.
 
British rider Danny Kent was just outside the points in 16th one place behind his Tech3 team-mate Louis Rossi. Blusens Avintia’s Kyle Smith didn’t go the distance while Gino Rea appeared to have technical issues with his FTR bike, though was able to go back out and gain some experience finishing 26th and ten laps adrift after having been as high as 12th place.

Moto3 Le Mans Race Top 15:

1.Maverick Viñales SPA Team Calvo (KTM) 42m 5.448
2. Alex Rins SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (KTM) 42m 6.712
3. Luis Salom SPA Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 42m 6.835
4. Jonas Folger GER Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3 (Kalex KTM) 42m 20.041
5. Alex Marquez SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (KTM) 42m 43.397
6. Jakub Kornfeil CZE Redox RW Racing GP (Kalex KTM) 42m 45.743
7. Romano Fenati ITA San Carlo Team Italia (FTR Honda) 42m 48.773
8. Brad Binder RSA Ambrogio Racing (Suter Honda) 42m 48.985
9. Alexis Masbou FRA Ongetta-Rivacold (FTR Honda) 42m 50.959
10. Isaac Viñales SPA Ongetta-Centro Seta (FTR Honda) 42m 51.122
11. John McPhee GBR Caretta Technology – RTG (FTR Honda) 42m 56.900
12. Jack Miller AUS Caretta Technology – RTG (FTR Honda) 42m 57.040
13. Arthur Sissis AUS Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 43m 4.161
14. Alessandro Tonucci ITA La Fonte Tascaracing (FTR Honda) 43m 4.418
15. Philipp Oettl GER Tec Interwetten Moto3 Racing (Kalex KTM) 43m 23.475

Moto2 Le Mans Race Top 15:

  • 1.Scott Redding GBR Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 36m 43.583s
    2. Mika Kallio FIN Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 36m 44.673s
    3. Xavier Simeon BEL Desguaces La Torre Maptaq (Kalex) 36m 44.817s
    4. Dominique Aegerter SWI Technomag carXpert (Suter) 36m 45.284s
    5. Johann Zarco FRA Came Iodaracing Project (Suter) 36m 45.442s
    6. Mattia Pasini ITA NGM Mobile Racing (Speed Up) 36m 55.855s
    7. Mike Di Meglio FRA JiR Moto2 (MotoBI) 36m 55.961s
    8. Julian Simon SPA Italtrans Racing Team (Kalex) 37m 13.295s
    9. Anthony West AUS QMMF Racing Team (Speed Up) 37m 14.062s
    10. Alex De Angelis RSM NGM Mobile Forward Racing (Speed Up) 37m 14.818s
    11. Randy Krummenache SWI Technomag carXpert (Suter) 37m 15.118s
    12. Simone Corsi ITA NGM Mobile Racing (Speed Up) 37m 15.258s
    13. Sandro Cortese GER Dynavolt Intact GP (Kalex) 37m 15.500s
    14. Marcel Schrotter GER Desguaces La Torre SAG (Kalex) 37m 19.361s
    15. Louis Rossi FRA Tech 3 (Tech 3) 37m 28.628s

Austin Qualifying: Moto2 and Moto3 – Rins dominant and debut pole for Redding

 

Moto3 kicked off the qualfying action at the Circuit of the Americas and Estrella Galicia rider Alex Rins took control of the session, slowly whittling down his time to take the second pole of his career.

 

He is joined on the front row by the same riders who featured on the podium on Qatar.

 

 

Nearest rival was fellow countryman Red Bull KTM rider Luis Salom and third was filled by another Spaniard Team Calvo’s Maverick Vinales, making for an all KTM front row.

 

Fastest of the Honda riders was Caretta Technology rider Jack Miller in fourth.

 

 

Danny Webb impressed on his Suter Honda and scored an eighth place start for Ambrogio Racing. Fellow Brit John McPhee struggled after having his bike wrecked in his crash with Alexis Masbou in Qatar and qualified 28th.

 

 

 

 

In Moto2 a last- gasp effort by Scott Redding saw him score the first pole of his career and the first for his team, Marc VDS.

 

 

The lap ousted Takaaki Nakagami from the pole spot for the second race in a row. In Qatar the Japanese Italtrans rider lost out to Pol Espargaro in the final seconds.

 

 

Third was filled by the first Suter to hit the timesheets, the Aspar of Nico Terol who took his first front row in Moto2 with his best qualifying since moving up into the class.

 

 

Tito Rabat was fourth and well ahead of his Tuenti HP 40 team-mate Pol Espargaro who made the best of a frustrating session to push to seventh late on.

 

 

British riders Kyle Smith and Danny Kent had their best Moto2 qualifying session to date with Kent starting from 13th for Tech3 and Smith 19th for the Italtrans outfit.

 

For more see my crash.net reports for Moto2 and Moto3 or visit paddockchatter.com !

 

Moto3 Austin Qualifying Top Ten:

 

1.Alex Rins SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (KTM) 2m 16.396
2. Luis Salom SPA Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 2m 16.879
3. Maverick Viñales SPA Team Calvo (KTM) 2m 17.100
4. Jack Miller AUS Caretta Technology – RTG (FTR Honda) 2m 18.303
5. Jonas Folger GER Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3 (Kalex KTM) 2m 18.570
6. Alex Marquez SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (KTM) 2m 18.595
7. Niklas Ajo FIN Avant Tecno (KTM) 2m 18.618
8. Danny Webb GBR Ambrogio Racing (Suter Honda) 2m 18.899
9. Alexis Masbou FRA Ongetta-Rivacold (FTR Honda) 2m 18.906
10. Arthur Sissis AUS Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 2m 18.951

 

 

Moto2 Austin Qualifying Top Ten:

 

 

1. Scott Redding GBR Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 2m 10.577
2. Takaaki Nakagami
JPN Italtrans Racing Team (Kalex) 2m 11.266
3. Nicolas Terol
SPA Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2 (Suter) 2m 11.287
4. Esteve Rabat
SPA Tuenti HP 40 (Kalex) 2m 11.383
5. Dominique Aegerter
SWI Technomag carXpert (Suter) 2m 11.606
6. Simone Corsi
ITA NGM Mobile Racing (Speed Up) 2m 11.725
7. Pol Espargaro
SPA Tuenti HP 40 (Kalex) 2m 11.838
8. Xavier Simeon
BEL Desguaces La Torre (Kalex) 2m 11.859
9. Mika Kallio
FIN Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 2m 11.925
10. Julian Simon
SPA Italtrans Racing Team (Kalex) 2m 12.001

 

 

Moto2: Tom Luthi makes surprise return in Texas

Tom Luthi

Luthi riding for Interwetten in 2011
Image by T.Tanabe used under the creative commons agreement via Flickr

Interwetten rider Tom Luthi has announced a shock comeback a whole round earlier than his projected return at Jerez in May. The Swiss star has flown out to Austin ready to ride at the inaugural Moto2 race around the Circuit of the Americas.

Luthi suffered damage to his elbow, arm, ligaments and collarbone in a crash with Ratthapark Wilairot at the Valencia test in February and was not at the season opener in Losail. His replacement Sergio Gadea finished 20th.

More on the injuries can be found in this post.

Just weeks ago he was struggling to do day-to-day basics like eat as he was having trouble moving his arm and hand. He has cut his recovery from an estimated three months to just 64 days.

Tom Luthi stated: “I put all my energy and willpower into working towards an early comeback and I am happy about my speedy recovery. I still lack power in my right arm, but nevertheless I’m sure that I’m ready to go out and race. I definitely want to take part in the free practice sessions on Friday. If I can confirm my hopes and ride without great difficulties, I will also start in the race on Sunday, trying to get the best possible result!”

Team Manager Daniel Epp added: “I was surprised about Tom’s decision to fly to Texas on Tuesday and to return to racing so soon, at the second Grand Prix of this season. But he made remarkable progress in his rehabilitation program, especially over the last days, so I can fully understand his decision to return now instead of the first European race at Jerez. We are all convinced of Tom’s ability to score a good result at Austin and he has our full support with this brave decision!”

It has not yet been announced if Sergio Gadea or another replacement rider will be flown out to race if Luthi cannot compete as planned.

Are you ready for Austin? MotoGP classes hit Texas!

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COTA welcomes MotoGP for the first time
Media via circuitoftheamericas.com

The second race of the year is almost upon us as MotoGP debuts at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas this weekend. What to expect looked pretty certain after Honda’s dominance at the COTA test, (read more here) with Marc Marquez particularly impressive, but Yamaha proved to be a force to be reckoned with after Jorge Lorenzo cleared away for the win in Losail under the floodlights in Qatar, with second place on the podium going to a resurgent, battling Valentino Rossi after an enjoyable tussle with rookie Marquez.

So, from a fans perspective hopefully the race will be less easy to call than it would initially appear, but what else does the trip to Texas hold?

No American has won on home soil since Nicky Hayden won at his ‘local’ track, Laguna Seca, seven years ago as a Honda Rider.

As the Ducati looked to still be the machine that is full of promise but low on delivery as the Kentucky Kid and his Italian team-mate Andrea Dovizioso qualified well only to fade in the race, it appears that this statistic will stand a while longer.

Fellow Americans and Texas locals Ben Spies (Pramac Ducati) and Colin Edwards (NGM Forward Racing) will be hoping to push their bikes to the limit for the best results they can muster at home.

Edwards did a ride around the track and to get a great feel of the circuit layout you can check out the video here.

Spies is still troubled by a shoulder injury.

Adding more Americans to the grid are the wild-card teams of GP Tech and Attack Performance, who will be present at all three U.S. GP’s. Both teams have tested at the circuit in advance and field Blake Young and Michael Barnes respectively.

In the lower classes the battle should be intense as the riders learn the track, with a surprise early return for Tom Luthi in Moto2. The Swiss rider was not expected to return until Jerez at the earliest and had to watch his substitute Sergio Gadea wreck his Interwetten bike in the season opener in Qatar.

Away from the racing, if you are in the USA and fancy a day out COTA have announced day tickets for General admission on Sunday will be just $59 on the gate and weekenders will be treated to entertainment from bands including The Bright Light Social Hour, Black Pistol Fire, my Jerusalem and Brass Knuckles.

MotoGP Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas schedule highlights (UK Time. Local U.S time = GMT -5):

Saturday

MotoGP FP3: 15:55 – 16:40

Moto3 QP: 18:35 – 19:15

MotoGP FP4: 19:30 – 20:00

MotoGP Q1: 20:10 – 20:25

MotoGP Q2: 20:35 – 20:50

Moto2 QP: 21:05- 21:50

Sunday

Moto3 race: 17:00

Moto2 race: 18:20

MotoGP race: 20:00

 

 

Moto2: Gadea in for recovering Luthi at Interwetten

Interwetten Paddock rider Tom Luthi underwent successful surgery for a second time after his pre-season testing accident on February 14th in which he fractured bones in his right elbow and continues his recovery.

For the last official tests at Jerez (March 18th to 21st) and for the first two races of the season  (Qatar and Austin), Spain’s Sergio Gadea has been announced as Luthi’s temporary replacement. The 28-year-old from Valencia celebrated three 125 cc victories in nine years of Grand Prix racing and also had a podium finish in his first Moto2 season in 2010. Towards the end of 2011, he suffered a bad crash at the Grand Prix of Japan at Motegi and was sidelined for several weeks. For 2012, he didn’t find enough financial support to continue Grand Prix racing on a professional level.

Luthi  said on his release from the hospital. “I am glad that the operations, the anaesthetics, the pain killers and the hospital atmosphere are now a thing of the past and that I’m now able to look ahead into the future and fully concentrate on my recovery”.

Gadea said in the press release on his opportunity:

“To be able to return to the world championship with such a professional team and such a competitive bike is a fantastic opportunity for me. Whilst I tried to keep in good shape throughout last year riding all kinds of different bikes, I was waiting for a chance like that. Times are tough in Spain, which made it very difficult to find financial support for this sport. I am even more delighted about this opportunity and I will pull all stops to deliver the best-possible results.”

“The Suter MMX2 is the world championship-winning machine and speaks for itself, as do the victories and podium finishes that Tom and his team conquered with this bike. But miracles don’t exist in this sport and even though I have more than a year of experience in the Moto2 category, I can’t expect to be able to compete on the same high level straight after my comeback. But I am still confident, because I had good results at Jerez and Qatar in the past. During the Jerez tests, I will try to learn and understand as much as possible about the bike, then we will see where we are at in comparison to our rivals. I can’t wait to get on the bike!“

Team owner Daniel Epp hopes Gadea can do well during his stint , but looks forward to his long- time rider Luthi’s return:

“We are all very happy that Tom’s second operation was a success and that he continues his quick recovery. But it is still realistic to assume a rehabilitation period of two months, which is why we nominated Sergio Gadea as a replacement rider for the upcoming Jerez tests and, in all likelihood, for the first two races of the season as well.  With three victories and a total of 18 podium finishes, Sergio proved that he is one of the top riders in Grand Prix racing. He deserves another chance. With Sergio in our team, Tom can go through his recovery program step by step and without time pressure. But of course, we and his bike are ready for him as soon as he is fit again!”.

Moto2: Tom Luthi targets Jerez return

Interwetten Paddock GP  rider Tom Luthi looks certain to miss at least the first two races of the 2013 MotoGP season after the multiple fractures he sustained in his testing crash with Ratthapark Wilairot in Valencia.

Tom Luthi

Tom Luthi and Interwetten have a long relationship – here’s Luthi riding for them in 2011
Image by T.Tanabe used under creative commons license via Flickr

Luthi, who recently underwent five hours of surgery at home in Switzerland to fix the fractures received to his right elbow, upper arm and shoulder is hopeful for a return when the paddock arrives in Europe for round three at Jerez in Spain on the 5th May.

Dr Marc Mettler, who performed the surgery on the Swiss rider has said Luthi will gain full mobility back to his arm but can not give a less speculative return date until the swelling subsides and passive and active rehabilitation have begun, the recovery is expected to take somewhere between eight and twelve weeks due to the nature of his injuries.

The Interwetten press statement also revealed Luthi’s views on his accident and recovery:

“Of course this injury is a big disappointment for me”, said Luthi. “But with my doctor of confidence, Dr. Marc Mettler, I am in the best hands and I am optimistic to be able to start the rehab program and the work toward my comeback very soon. It was very nice to feel so much compassion, which motivates me even more to work hard for a speedy recovery!”

The team also addressed their very urgent problem of need ing a replacement in time for the next test:

“Tom’s recovery is our top priority and his absence from racing is of minor importance to us”, said team owner Daniel M. Epp. “But obviously, we have to prepare for the fact that he will miss the season opening races, which is why we are looking for a replacement rider for the last official IRTA test session at Jerez and for the first two Grand Prix in Qatar and Austin. A suitable rider will enable us to continue with our testing program and also will allow us to practice a smooth work flow in the garage so the technicians will also be fully fit when Tom returns!”

Jerez Moto2 and Moto3 testing round-up

The second test for Moto2 and Moto3 is well under way now in Jerez and after some more unusual results in the wet of day one where the Ambrogio Racing team lead the way in Moto3, with Brit Danny Webb at the top of the timesheets, normal service was resumed on day two when Maverick Vinales and Pol Espargaro lead the way in their relevant classes.

I am writing detailed day by day test reports for bike racing website Paddock Chatter, so for more information and to find out who will be the ones to watch in 2013 follow the links, where you can comment too!

Day one (wet):

http://www.paddockchatter.com/2013/02/moto3-test-danny-webb-tops-weather.html

http://www.paddockchatter.com/2013/02/moto2-test-nico-terol-leads-way-at-rain.html

Day two:

http://www.paddockchatter.com/2013/02/moto3-test-vinales-back-on-top-in-jerez.html

http://www.paddockchatter.com/2013/02/moto2-test-espargaro-dominant-in-dry.html