Maverick Vinales moved to the head of the Moto3 championship standings by winning the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez. The Team Calvo rider was declared the winner after fifteen laps when the red flags were thrown due to a crash involving Alan Techer with Luis Salom a frustrated second. Polesitter Alex Rins surrendered the championship lead after crashing out of second place on lap eleven.
It all looked so positive for Rins after his show of strength in qualifying and the Estrella Galicia rider was first into turn one with Vinales and Salom following him in grid order while Jonas Folger was the big winner, jumping from seventh to fourth.
Vinales didn’t wait too long before taking the fight to Rins and outbraked his compatriot into the Dry Sac hairpin on lap three but there was no possibility of Maverick breaking away as the top four remaining close together. That was until lap eleven when Rins lost the front end of his KTM at turn ten, promoting Salom to second while Folger began to lose ground as the tyres began to cry enough on his Kalex-KTM.
Salom’s strategy seemed clear as he shadowed Vinales but before he had chance to put his winning plan into practice, the red flags brought racing to a halt. CIP’s Alan Techer had fallen and was requiring treatment at the side of the track, forcing race direction to end the race on safety grounds, and Salom would be classified second, a quarter of a second behind the victorious Vinales.
Folger was a lonely third and was understandably disappointed in parc ferme after failing to keep pace with the KTMs once again. Brad Binder was jubilant with fourth though on his Suter Honda after matching the best result of his career, staying aboard when the likes of Niccolo Antonelli, Jack Miller and Miguel Oliveira crashed out whilst trying to keep up with him.
Missing all of Friday to sit school exams didn’t appear to hinder Jakub Kornfeil who claimed fifth ahead of Niklas Ajo, Zulfahmi Khairuddin and the sole remaining Mahindra of Efren Vazquez while Romano Fenati and Alexis Masbou rounded out the top ten. John McPhee had reason to feel tenth should have been his but as it turned out, his overtake on Masbou came a lap too late as the countback to lap fifteen relegated him back down to eleventh. Danny Webb followed Arthur Sissis home in thirteenth for three championship points while Belgian teenager Livio Loi opened his account on his debut, taking the final point in fifteenth behind Jasper Iwema.