Nakagami Takes First Win as Rain Hits Assen

Takaaki Nakagami’s agonising wait for a maiden Grand Prix victory is over after the Japanese rider won a rain-shortened Dutch TT at Assen. The Idemitsu Honda Team Asia rider, who had seven previous podium finishes to his name, pulled out a sizeable lead mid-race and held off a late challenge from Johann Zarco before the red flags ended proceedings two laps early.

In the early stages, the race looked set to see an all-Swiss scrap for victory with Thomas Luthi leading away from pole position, followed by Dominique Aegerter. The pair were soon swallowed up though by the Marc VDS Kalex of Franco Morbidelli who hit the front on lap four while Nakagami followed past a lap later before giving chase.

With both chasing a maiden win, an entertaining battle ensued but Nakagami eventually seized control of the race with a move into turn one on lap ten and with Morbidelli falling into the clutches of Luthi and Zarco, Takaaki had the perfect opportunity to make his escape. The world champion secured second at Stekkenwal but the two laps it had taken to complete the manoeuvre proved crucial as Nakagami opened a three second buffer.

Only the late drizzle could threaten Nakagami now but with conditions steadily worsening, Zarco slashed his lead to 1.5 seconds heading into the penultimate lap but the red flag ultimately came to Nakagami’s rescue, handing him a well-deserved victory. Zarco claimed second, and with it the championship lead, while Morbidelli completed the rostrum spots.

Luthi’s race plummeted downhill after losing the lead with a crash three laps from home ruling him out of fourth. His loss was Sam Lowes’ gain with the Briton inheriting the thirteen points on offer while Lorenzo Baldassarri also benefitted, finishing fifth. Alex Rins ended up a subdued sixth, losing his points lead as a result, while Simone Corsi saw off Alex Marquez and the fading Aegerter for seventh.


Moto2 Motul TT Assen (Race Result)

130. Takaaki NakagamiKalexIdemitsu Honda Team Asia34:33.94825
25. Johann ZarcoKalexAjo Motorsport+2.43520
321. Franco MorbidelliKalexEG 0,0 Marc VDS+5.67016
422. Sam LowesKalexFederal Oil Gresini Moto2+7.06913
57. Lorenzo BaldassarriKalexForward Team+7.88311
640. Alex RinsKalexPaginas Amarillas HP 40+9.21510
724. Simone CorsiSpeed UpSpeed Up+9.4829
873. Alex MarquezKalexEG 0,0 Marc VDS+15.0048
977. Dominique AegerterKalexCarXpert Interwetten+15.2277
1094. Jonas FolgerKalexDynavolt Intact GP+15.4046
1119. Xavier SimeonSpeed UpQMMF Racing Team+16.3745
1211. Sandro CorteseKalexDynavolt Intact GP+16.5674
1323. Marcel SchrotterKalexAGR Team+24.7703
1452. Danny KentKalexLeopard Racing+25.0172
1544. Miguel OliveiraKalexLeopard Racing+25.5421
1660. Julian SimonSpeed UpQMMF Racing Team+25.729
1797. Xavi ViergeTech 3Tech 3 Racing+34.115
182. Jesko RaffinKalexsports-millions-EMWE-SAG+34.180
1954. Mattia PasiniKalexItaltrans Racing Team+34.764
2087. Remy GardnerKalexTasca Racing Scuderia Moto2+41.438
2132. Isaac VinalesTech 3Tech 3 Racing+42.058
2270. Robin MulhauserKalexCarXpert Interwetten+48.683
2357. Edgar PonsKalexPaginas Amarillas HP 40+56.096
NC12. Thomas LuthiKalexGarage Plus Interwetten+3 Laps
NC10. Luca MariniKalexForward Team+4 Laps
NC55. Hafizh SyahrinKalexPetronas Raceline Malaysia+7 Laps
NC49. Axel PonsKalexAGR Team+17 Laps