Nicolas Terol left it late before snatching victory from Johann Zarco after a race-long battle which went all the way to the final few metres of the Grand Prix. The two riders were in a class of their own had the race for victory all to themselves, with tactics proving all-important.
Terol made a lightning start from the second row and fired the Aspar Aprilia through the middle of the front row men to take the lead into San Donato. Zarco latched onto the back of him and the pair of them quickly stretched clear of the rest of the field, led by Luis Salom and the Blusens Aprilias of Sergio Gadea and Maverick Vinales.
Vinales fought his way to the front of the chasing group on lap three, bringing Efren Vazquez and Hector Faubel with him, but by this point the top two were nearly four seconds clear. Salom soon fell back to sixth but had a comfortable advantage over the battle for seventh between Gadea and Sandro Cortese. Meanwhile, Jonas Folger had made rapid progress from 21st on the grid and was closing in on them in ninth.
At half distance, tactics started to come into play in the battle for the lead, with Terol running slightly wide at San Donato and allowing Zarco into the lead. It soon became clear that the Spaniard was content to follow the Frenchman as he continuously sat up whenever he got into the slipstream of the Derbi.
The leaders ran nose to tail until the closing seconds of the race, with Zarco trying in vain to shake off the attentions of Terol, but as they exited Bucine for the final time, Terol made his move. There would be no sitting up this time and despite Zarco's attempt to break the two, Terol blasted past to take his fifth victory of the season by just 0.167s.
The fight for the final podium position also went down to the wire. Vinales held third but lost ground in a strange incident on lap 16 when he gestured over his left shoulder to Vazquez, seemingly letting him through, but as he did that, Faubel sneaked through on the blind side to take third.
Vinales responded two laps later and slipstreamed past the Aspar Aprilia on the start/finish straight to secure the final podium position. Faubel lost further ground on the final lap allowing Vazquez to take fourth with Luis Salom finishing a distant sixth.
The fight for seventh proved as fierce as any with Gadea and Cortese running side-by-side on the run to the finish line. Despite Cortese's best efforts to squeeze Gadea towards the grass, the Spaniard got his wheel in front by 0.010s. In the end, it didn't matter as Cortese's robust defence earned him a 20 second penalty.
This promoted Miguel Oliveira to eighth and his teammate Alberto Moncayo to ninth but both riders were beneficiaries of a late crash for Jonas Folger. The German was hot on the heels of Gadea and Cortese but slid off at Palagio just three laps from home.
Like Folger, Red Bull Ajo MotorSport teammate Danny Kent had to come from behind after a terrible qualifying session and the Briton snatched 15th on the last lap to continue his run of points-scoring finishes. Taylor Mackenzie finished right on his tail in 17th.
Danny Webb was forced to race in severe pain after injuring his shoulder in morning warm-up and pulled into the pits at half distance. Harry Stafford had a crash of his own and lost any chance of points in the race after a bright start.
Race Result (20 Laps):
|1||Nicolas Terol||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||39:51.815||25|
|3||Maverick Vinales||SPA||Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing||+8.379||16|
|5||Hector Faubel||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||+8.594||11|
|6||Luis Salom||SPA||RW Racing GP||+22.908||10|
|7||Sergio Gadea||SPA||Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing||+23.989||9|
|8||Miguel Oliveira||POR||AndalucÃa Banca Civica||+40.138||8|
|9||Alberto Moncayo||SPA||AndalucÃa Banca Civica||+40.767||7|
|11||Marcel Schrotter||GER||Mahindra Racing||+41.255||5|
|12||Sandro Cortese||GER||Intact-Racing Team Germany||+43.999||4|
|13||Simone Grotzkyj||ITA||Phonica Racing||+46.172||3|
|15||Danny Kent||GBR||Red Bull Ajo MotorSport||+59.725||1|
|16||Alexis Masbou||FRA||Caretta Technology||+1:00.127|
|17||Taylor Mackenzie||GBR||Phonica Racing||+1:00.227|
|19||Miroslav Popov||CZE||Ellegi Racing||+1:10.593|
|20||Alessandro Tonucci||ITA||Team Italia FMI||+1:13.662|
|21||Francesco Mauriello||ITA||WTR-Ten10 Racing||+1:23.949|
|22||Niklas Ajo||FIN||TT Motion Events Racing||+1:38.811|
|23||Giulian Pedone||SWI||Phonica Racing||+1:53.144|
|Luigi Morciano||ITA||Team Italia FMI||+1 Lap|
|Kevin Calia||ITA||MGP Racing||+1 Lap|
|Jonas Folger||GER||Red Bull Ajo MotorSport||+3 Laps|
|Danny Webb||GBR||Mahindra Racing||+11 Laps|
|Peter Sebestyen||HUN||Caretta Technology||+11 Laps|
|Louis Rossi||FRA||Matteoni Racing||+13 Laps|
|Joan Perello||SPA||Matteoni Racing||+13 Laps|
|Sturla Fagerhaug||NOR||WTR-Ten10 Racing||+13 Laps|
|Massimo Parziani||ITA||Faenza Racing||+14 Laps|
|Adrian Martin||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||+19 Laps|
|Harry Stafford||GBR||Ongetta-Centro-Seta||+19 Laps|
Lap Leaders (20 Laps):
Terol (1-10, 20) Zarco (11-19)
Riders Championship (After Round 8: Italy)
|1||Nicolas Terol||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||5||153|
|3||Maverick Vinales||SPA||Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing||2||106|
|4||Jonas Folger||GER||Red Bull Ajo MotorSport||1||101|
|5||Sandro Cortese||GER||Intact-Racing Team Germany||98|
|7||Luis Salom||SPA||RW Racing GP||65|
|8||Hector Faubel||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||65|
|9||Sergio Gadea||SPA||Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing||61|
|10||Danny Kent||GBR||Red Bull Ajo MotorSport||39|
|12||Adrian Martin||SPA||Bankia Aspar Team||30|
|13||Miguel Oliveira||POR||AndalucÃa Banca Civica||30|
|14||Alberto Moncayo||SPA||AndalucÃa Banca Civica||23|
|15||Simone Grotzkyj||ITA||Phonica Racing||19|
|16||Taylor Mackenzie||GBR||Phonica Racing||15|
|17||Marcel Schrotter||GER||Mahindra Racing||15|
|19||Louis Rossi||FRA||Matteoni Racing||13|
|20||Alexis Masbou||FRA||Caretta Technology||10|
|21||Hiroki Ono||JAP||Caretta Technology||8|
|22||Danny Webb||GBR||Mahindra Racing||8|
|24||Niklas Ajo||FIN||TT Motion Events Racing||5|
|25||John McPhee||GBR||Racing Steps Foundation KRP||1|