Rins Denies Vinales On Final Lap At Misano

by Louis Suddaby

Alex Rins overtook Maverick Vinales five corners from the finish to snatch victory in the San Marino Grand Prix as both closed in on championship leader Luis Salom. Stricken by injury, Salom was unable to do better than fourth, leaving him powerless to prevent his two title rivals contest the race victory.

Jonas Folger would have hoped to be part of the action at the sharp end after his sensational pole position but the German only lasted two laps at the front before being passed by Rins, the Estrella Galicia rider easing past at Quercia. Vinales would follow through into second moments later and the next time Folger arrived at Quercia would be his last as the rear end of his Kalex-KTM stepped out, triggering a nasty highside and launching Jonas into the air. The heavy landing saw the Aspar rider suffer a broken left foot but no other serious injuries.

With no other threat from behind, Rins and Vinales had the race to themselves and the Team Calvo rider looked the stronger at half distance, taking the lead at Tramanto but with every lap that passed, Rins showed no signs of struggling to match the pace of the man in front. After biding his time, Rins put his plan into action at Quercia on the final lap but Vinales, keen to end a winning drought stretching back to Le Mans, was wise to the move and cut back underneath his compatriot.

Unfortunately for Maverick, that left Rins perfectly placed heading onto the back straight and at the right handed sweeper of turn eleven, the lead would switch hands for the final time. Vinales pushed his KTM to the ragged edge in the last two corners to try and regain the lead but Rins had done enough for his fourth win of 2013.

Alex Marquez completed an excellent day for Estrella Galicia with another fine podium while Luis Salom fought off a pack of four riders, including teammate Zulfahmi Khairuddin, to finish fourth, decent damage limitation under the circumstances. Jack Miller sneaked past Khairuddin on the run to the finish line for fifth with Miguel Oliveira the first Mahindra home in seventh. Niccolo Antonelli took eighth for Gresini ahead of Philipp Oettl who produced the best performance of his rookie season to beat Romano Fenati for ninth.

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