Tito Rabat won an enthralling head-to-head battle with Alex Rins to claim victory in the Grand Prix of Aragon, ensuring the championship will remain alive heading to Japan in two weeks’ time. Rabat kept his compatriot at bay on the last lap to take his second win of the year while champion-elect Johann Zarco had his worst race since the season opener in Qatar, limping home in sixth.
The race was lit up in the early stages by a fast-starting Sam Lowes who grabbed the lead from Rins on lap one. The Paginas Amarillas rider fought back before the end of lap one but any advantage he may have gained soon disappeared upon the arrival of the red flags. A collision between Xavier Simeon and Dominique Aegerter at turn fifteen left the Swiss rider requiring trackside treatment and race direction took the sensible option to halt proceedings.
After a half-hour delay, the race restarted over fourteen laps with all riders starting from their original grid positions. That handed Rabat the chance to succeed where he had failed on the initial start and keep Lowes’ Speed Up at bay. The reigning champion couldn’t prevent Rins taking the early lead once again but he didn’t have Zarco to worry about as the Frenchman quickly fell backwards.
As the shortened race reached half-distance, Rabat burst into life and outbraked Rins into turn one but try as he might, Tito couldn’t break away from the championship rookie. This put Rins in the perfect position for a last lap attack and on the way into turn twelve, Alex dived for the inside of the Marc VDS Kalex. Rabat was wise to the manoeuvre though and immediately regained the lead and after placing his machine perfectly on the back straight, denying Rins a slipstream, Rabat had done enough to clinch a much-needed victory.
Sam Lowes rode a lonely race to third, ending his five race streak without a podium finish, while Jonas Folger took his best result since winning at Jerez in fourth. Thomas Luthi was a distant fifth but he still managed to beat an off-form Johann Zarco who held off Hafizh Syahrin for sixth. Takaaki Nakagami was eighth for IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia while Forward Racing teammates Simone Corsi and Lorenzo Baldassarri completed the top ten.
MOTO2 GRAN PREMIO MOVISTAR DE ARAGON: RACE RESULT (14 LAPS)
|1||1. Tito Rabat||Kalex||Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS||26:25.125|
|2||40. Alex Rins||Kalex||Paginas Amarillas HP 40||+0.096|
|3||22. Sam Lowes||Speed Up||Speed Up Racing||+5.364|
|4||94. Jonas Folger||Kalex||AGR Team||+7.363|
|5||12. Thomas Luthi||Kalex||Derendinger Racing Interwetten||+16.723|
|6||5. Johann Zarco||Kalex||Ajo Motorsport||+16.989|
|7||55. Hafizh Syahrin||Kalex||Petronas Raceline Malaysia||+17.086|
|8||30. Takaaki Nakagami||Kalex||IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia||+18.056|
|9||3. Simone Corsi||Kalex||Forward Racing||+18.658|
|10||7. Lorenzo Baldassarri||Kalex||Forward Racing||+19.656|
|11||36. Mika Kallio||Speed Up||QMMF Racing Team||+20.090|
|12||49. Axel Pons||Kalex||AGR Team||+20.222|
|13||11. Sandro Cortese||Kalex||Dynavolt Intact GP||+21.043|
|14||25. Azlan Shah||Kalex||IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia||+22.384|
|15||23. Marcel Schrotter||Tech 3||Tech 3||+26.017|
|16||97. Xavi Vierge||Tech 3||Tech 3||+34.464|
|17||4. Randy Krummenacher||Kalex||JIR Moto2||+34.658|
|18||88. Ricard Cardus||Suter||JPmoto Malaysia||+34.727|
|19||70. Robin Mulhauser||Kalex||Technomag Racing Interwetten||+37.335|
|20||2. Jesko Raffin||Kalex||sports-millions-EMWE-SAG||+44.018|
|21||66. Florian Alt||Suter||IodaRacing Team||+44.275|
|22||10. Thitipong Warokorn||Kalex||APH PTT The Pizza SAG||+44.604|
|23||96. Louis Rossi||Tech 3||Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2||+54.320|
|NC||32. Federico Fuligni||Suter||Team Ciatti||+1 Lap|
|NC||73. Alex Marquez||Kalex||Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS||+7 Laps|
|NC||60. Julian Simon||Speed Up||QMMF Racing Team||+10 Laps|
|NC||57. Edgar Pons||Kalex||Italtrans Racing Team||+11 Laps|
|NC||19. Xavier Simeon||Kalex||Federal Oil Gresini Moto2||+12 Laps|
|NC||39. Luis Salom||Kalex||Paginas Amarillas HP 40||+12 Laps|
|NS||77. Dominique Aegerter||Kalex||Technomag Racing Interwetten||Injured|
|NS||64. Federico Caricasulo||Kalex||Italtrans Racing Team|