John McPhee became Moto3’s eighth different winner in eleven races this season after a crash for Brad Binder handed him a maiden victory at Brno. The South African looked set to extend his championship lead with a fourth win of 2016 but as the rain intensified, Binder came unstuck, leaving McPhee perfectly placed to take advantage.
Binder had claimed pole position in the dry on Saturday but with heavy rain soaking the Brno circuit on race day, the order was quickly transformed as unlikely contenders moved to the front. Former Red Bull Rookies champion Jorge Martin was the bravest rider early on, taking the lead at turn one, but Binder and McPhee overhauled him by lap five and slowly distanced the Aspar Mahindra.
Given the conditions, many were looking towards rain-master Khairul Idham Pawi and despite starting 29th on the grid, the Malaysian rampaged up the order. At half distance, Pawi’s progress had taken him past Martin and into a podium spot and a remarkable third wet victory looked a genuine possibility.
Sensing the threat, Binder and McPhee upped the pace but in doing so, the Red Bull KTM Ajo rider pushed just a little too hard at turn one, high-siding his machine as he asked for the power. McPhee inherited the lead and if that news wasn’t good enough, the danger from behind was removed almost simultaneously as Pawi crashed out of second.
Despite a near high-side of his own, McPhee saw out the remaining four laps to secure a memorable victory with Martin taking his first ever Grand Prix rostrum in second. Fabio Di Giannantonio produced the latest stand-out display in an increasingly impressive rookie season, finishing third ahead of teammate Enea Bastianini while Niccolo Antonelli beat Jakub Kornfeil to fifth.
Bo Bendsneyder saw off fellow rookies Joan Mir and Nicolo Bulega to finish a career-best seventh while Jorge Navarro’s tenth place saw the Spaniard move six points closer to the championship lead.
Moto3 HJC Helmets Grand Prix Ceske Republiky (Race Result)
|1||17. John McPhee||Peugeot||Peugeot MC Saxoprint||45:36.087||25|
|2||88. Jorge Martin||Mahindra||Pull & Bear ASPAR Mahindra Team||+8.806||20|
|3||4. Fabio Di Giannantonio||Honda||Gresini Racing Moto3||+9.777||16|
|4||33. Enea Bastianini||Honda||Gresini Racing Moto3||+10.654||13|
|5||23. Niccolo Antonelli||Honda||Ongetta-Rivacold||+13.872||11|
|6||84. Jakub Kornfeil||Honda||Drive M7 SIC Racing Team||+15.533||10|
|7||64. Bo Bendsneyder||KTM||Red Bull KTM Ajo||+15.819||9|
|8||36. Joan Mir||KTM||Leopard Racing||+16.289||8|
|9||8. Nicolo Bulega||KTM||Sky Racing Team VR46||+16.473||7|
|10||9. Jorge Navarro||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0||+16.681||6|
|11||95. Jules Danilo||Honda||Ongetta-Rivacold||+18.198||5|
|12||16. Andrea Migno||KTM||Sky Racing Team VR46||+21.640||4|
|13||24. Tatsuki Suzuki||Mahindra||CIP-Unicom Starker||+31.007||3|
|14||11. Livio Loi||Honda||RW Racing GP BV||+36.895||2|
|15||65. Philipp Oettl||KTM||Schedl GP Racing||+43.651||1|
|16||98. Karel Hanika||KTM||Freudenberg Racing Team||+57.814|
|17||19. Gabriel Rodrigo||KTM||RBA Racing Team||+1:01.428|
|18||42. Marcos Ramirez||Mahindra||Platinum Bay Real Estate||+1:04.134|
|19||6. Maria Herrera||KTM||MH6 Team||+1:27.585|
|20||76. Hiroki Ono||Honda||Honda Team Asia||+1:27.997|
|21||20. Fabio Quartararo||KTM||Leopard Racing||+1:33.942|
|22||3. Fabio Spiranelli||Mahindra||CIP-Unicom Starker||+1:34.610|
|23||58. Juanfran Guevara||KTM||RBA Racing Team||+1:34.942|
|24||77. Lorenzo Petrarca||Mahindra||3570 Team Italia||+2:08.319|
|NC||55. Andrea Locatelli||KTM||Leopard Racing||+3 Laps|
|NC||41. Brad Binder||KTM||Red Bull KTM Ajo||+5 Laps|
|NC||89. Khairul Idham Pawi||Honda||Honda Team Asia||+5 Laps|
|NC||43. Stefano Valtulini||Mahindra||3570 Team Italia||+5 Laps|
|NC||40. Darryn Binder||Mahindra||Platinum Bay Real Estate||+6 Laps|
|NC||21. Francesco Bagnaia||Mahindra||Pull & Bear ASPAR Mahindra Team||+7 Laps|
|NC||12. Albert Arenas||Peugeot||Peugeot MC Saxoprint||+8 Laps|
|NC||7. Adam Norrodin||Honda||Drive M7 SIC Racing Team||+10 Laps|
|NC||44. Aron Canet||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0||+11 Laps|