Danny Kent produced another astonishing display of dominance to win the Argentine Grand Prix at Termas de Rio Hondo. The Briton set a new record winning margin for a dry Moto3 race last weekend in Texas but smashed his own record in Argentina, beating Leopard Racing teammate Efren Vazquez by over ten seconds.
The action kicked off, quite literally, in the morning warm-up as 2014 winner Romano Fenati was seen lashing out with his feet at Niklas Ajo, kicking the Finn’s machine on the slow-down lap after the chequered flag. That alone had attracted the attention of race direction but Fenati compounded his situation by switching Ajo’s KTM off as they lined up together for a practice start. His punishment was three penalty points which, added to the point he picked up here last season, combined to relegate him from eighth on the grid to stone last.
The early stages of the Grand Prix followed a similar pattern to Austin with Kent content to let his rivals set the pace before making his move three laps in. Isaac Vinales was overhauled on lap three and initially looked able to hang onto the no.52 Honda but a dramatic incident on lap five gave Danny the break he needed.
While chasing Vinales for second, Niccolo Antonelli went into battle with the Estrella Galicia Honda of Jorge Navarro but under braking for turn seven, the Spanish rookie lost the front end of the no.9 machine and wiped out third-placed Antonelli. Vinales was also distracted by the mayhem and lost a second to the race leader and once the slipstream was lost, Kent became a bright blue spec in the distance.
With Kent out on his own, cruising to a second consecutive victory, the fight for the right to finish as best of the rest comprised of the entire compliment of points-scorers. In the end, Vazquez muscled his way to the front of the group, pipping Vinales by 0.062s with the Laglisse rider claiming the first podium of the season for KTM or Husqvarna.
After a sizeable error dropped him out of the points on lap four, polesitter Miguel Oliveira battled bravely to finish fourth ahead of teammate Brad Binder with Fabio Quartararo edging out the third Red Bull Ajo KTM of Karel Hanika. Romano Fenati was next up, putting his aggression to good use this time in his charge through the field to eighth with Enea Bastianini and Fenati’s morning adversary Ajo rounding out the top ten.
Moto3 GP RED BULL DE LA REPÚBLICA ARGENTINA – RACE RESULT (21 LAPS)
|1||52. Danny Kent||Honda||Leopard Racing||38:25.621|
|2||7. Efren Vazquez||Honda||Leopard Racing||+10.334|
|3||32. Isaac Vinales||Husqvarna||Husqvarna Factory Laglisse||+10.396|
|4||44. Miguel Oliveira||KTM||Red Bull KTM Ajo||+10.767|
|5||41. Brad Binder||KTM||Red Bull KTM Ajo||+11.117|
|6||20. Fabio Quartararo||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0||+11.195|
|7||98. Karel Hanika||KTM||Red Bull KTM Ajo||+11.388|
|8||5. Romano Fenati||KTM||Sky Racing Team VR46||+11.603|
|9||33. Enea Bastianini||Honda||Junior Team Gresini Moto3||+11.712|
|10||31. Niklas Ajo||KTM||RBA Racing Team||+11.806|
|11||21. Francesco Bagnaia||Mahindra||Mapfre Mahindra Team||+11.958|
|12||11. Livio Loi||Honda||RW Racing GP||+12.355|
|13||76. Hiroki Ono||Honda||Leopard Racing||+12.501|
|14||84. Jakub Kornfeil||KTM||Drive M7 SIC Racing Team||+12.644|
|15||17. John McPhee||Honda||Saxoprint-RTG||+12.772|
|16||65. Philipp Oettl||KTM||Schedl GP Racing||+22.477|
|17||16. Andrea Migno||KTM||Sky Racing Team VR46||+23.352|
|18||29. Stefano Manzi||Mahindra||San Carlo Team Italia||+28.746|
|19||2. Remy Gardner||Mahindra||CIP||+30.409|
|20||63. Zulfahmi Khairuddin||KTM||Drive M7 SIC Racing Team||+30.644|
|21||12. Matteo Ferrari||Mahindra||San Carlo Team Italia||+30.786|
|22||88. Jorge Martin||Mahindra||Mapfre Mahindra Team||+44.095|
|23||55. Andrea Locatelli||Honda||Junior Team Gresini Moto3||+45.153|
|24||40. Darryn Binder||Mahindra||Outox Reset Drink Team||+49.149|
|25||19. Alessandro Tonucci||Mahindra||Outox Reset Drink Team||+51.073|
|26||22. Ana Carrasco||KTM||RBA Racing Team||+56.185|
|27||24. Tatsuki Suzuki||Mahindra||CIP||+1:01.461|
|28||91. Gabriel Rodrigo||KTM||RBA Racing Team||+1 Lap|
|NC||9. Jorge Navarro||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0||+6 Laps|
|NC||58. Juanfran Guevara||Mahindra||Mapfre Mahindra Team||+9 Laps|
|NC||10. Alexis Masbou||Honda||Saxoprint-RTG||+14 Laps|
|NC||23. Niccolo Antonelli||Honda||Ongetta-Rivacold||+17 Laps|
|NC||95. Jules Danilo||Honda||Ongetta-Rivacold||+18 Laps|
|NC||6. Maria Herrera||Husqvarna||Husqvarna Factory Laglisse||+21 Laps|