Thomas Luthi won a race long battle with Esteve Rabat to take victory in the season finale at Valencia after Rabat’s machine hit problems on the run to the finish line. The new world champion had withstood intense pressure from Luthi but exiting the final corner, his Marc VDS Kalex began to run short of fuel, allowing the Swiss rider to cruise past.
Rabat had led every lap of the race up until his hiccup in the dying seconds with Luthi often diving past at turn one, only to overshoot the left-hander and allow the Spaniard back through. But exiting the final corner, the Kalex wheelied with the machine gasping for fuel, and Luthi’s perfectly healthy Suter breezed past in the final metres of the race to take a second victory of 2014.
Despite falling to second, Rabat set a new points record for a single season in the intermediate class and the world champion was still in positive mood as a memorable season came to a close.
“It is a pity that I could not end the season with a victory because I think we deserved it. It was a hard battle with Luthi and I couldn’t relax for one second because he was pushing really hard. Conditions for the race were cooler and I was sliding more and that consumed more fuel. Coming out of the last corner I had a small issue and unfortunately it meant Luthi could take the win. I am sorry for my fans but it has still been an unforgettable season and I am pleased that I could set a new points record.”
The fight for second in the world championship was the source of much of the pre-race interest but the battle was settled on lap one, with Maverick Vinales outbraking himself into the last corner and wiping out Mika Kallio along with himself, handing the overall runner-up spot to the Finn.
Johann Zarco rode a lonely race to the podium in third with Luis Salom achieving his best result since the beginning of June with fourth. Xavier Simeon saw off Dominique Aegerter to finish fifth with Sam Lowes rounding off his rookie campaign with seventh.