Nico Terol took his fourth win of 2011 after Johann Zarco (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo) was penalised 20 seconds for an illegal overtake on the last lap in the 125 race. Maverick Viñales (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing Team) finished second with Jonas Folger (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) promoted to third.
A tactical battle ensued at the start of the race between Terol (Bankia Aspar), Zarco and Viñales. The very experienced Terol pulled a gap of over six seconds pursued by Zarco, who battled him for the win, overtaking Terol in the last few laps.
Terol, who celebrated his 100th start in last month’s Le Mans race, proved a tough a competitor, and regained the lead in the final lap. But Zarco was determined for the win, and in the last corner tried to overtake again, pushing Terol off the track into the grass. Zarco was penalised 20 points and thereby demoted to sixth position, giving Terol his fourth win of the season. Viñales claimed his second podium of the 2011 season with a second place finish, followed by Folger.
Héctor Faubel (Bankia Aspar) ran wide with seven laps to go when he and Folger nearly touched, forcing Faubel out of the top five.
After a wet weather warm up, the 125cc race start was held in drying conditions. Most of the field chose slick tires for the race including all of the race leaders, though several riders opted for rain tyres at the start, including Taylor Mackenzie (Phonica Racing) who had nothing to lose after qualifying last on the grid due to technical problems that saw him miss FP3 and most of qualifying. However as the race progressed, the sun came out and progressively dried the track, forcing those who chose the rain tyres to the pits for a change to slicks.
Fourth place finisher was Sandro Cortese (Intact Racing Team Germany), followed by Efrén Vázquez (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo), Zarco and with Faubel following in seventh. Eighth place finisher was Sergio Gadea (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing Team), Adrián Martín (Bankia Aspar) took ninth and Jakub Kornfeil (Ongetta-Centro Seta) rounded out the top ten.
Treacherous conditions early in the race claimed several victims, including two Brits Danny Webb (Mahindra Racing) and Harry Stafford (Ongetta-Centro Seta) who both crashed in the first corner on the opening lap, and Miguel Oliveira (Team Andalucía Banca Cívica) who went down after a lightening start, suffering a fractured wrist.
Zulfahmi Khairuddin (AirAsia-SIC-Ajo) crashed in turn 8 after an incredible start that helped launch him to fifth in the beginning of the race.
[Press Release and Photo Courtesy of MotoGP]