Albert Arenas and the Gaviota Ángel Nieto Team returned to the top step of the podium today with a sensational victory sealed by a stunning final corner move. The Spaniard ran at the front throughout the race after qualifying on the front row and he looked comfortable on his KTM, going head to head with title contenders Lorenzo dalla Porta, Aron Canet and Tony Arbolino.
Arenas started the final lap in third position but a double overtake on Lorenzo dalla Porta and Alonso López gave him the lead going into the final sector. Dalla Porta passed Arenas back on the way in to the final corner but Arenas held his line on the inside to secure his third Grand Prix victory.
The Gaviota Ángel Nieto Team rider has been a frontrunner for the last three races – crashing out of fifth place in Misano before finishing eighth at Aragón. Sixth on the first day in Thailand, third on the grid and fastest in the warm-up, Arenas had every reason to be confident today and his victory moves him up to 12+1 in the championship going into the next three flyaway races.
His teammate Raúl Fernández scored his best result since the summer break with ninth place in the Grand Prix of Thailand. The Gaviota Ángel Nieto Team rider made up more than fifteen positions in the race, having dropped back to 27th place from thirteenth on the grid. The Spaniard had issues under braking during the race but he overcame the setback to recover positions and produce a strong finish.
WINNER: ALBERT ARENAS:
“I want to thank everybody who has got me here. I am very happy, I knew I had a strong pace and in the race I felt really comfortable. I played my cards right – there were areas of the track where I was strong and others where I wasn’t so I managed it the best way possible. The last corner was savage – I got the bike stopped a little harder, went up the inside and it worked out. The start of the season was tough but now it’s time to have fun.”
9th Raúl Fernández:
“Physically I felt really good in the race, better with every lap. It is just a shame that the bike was bouncing under braking and it was hard to get it stopped. On the second lap it caused me to run wide and I dropped back to 27th position. I was able to fight back to ninth, although I was struggling a lot in turn one and that cost me time on the straight. I am not happy with this result because I felt much stronger than a lot of the other riders out there, who were all making mistakes in the last part of the race, when I was able to push even more.”
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