Jake Dixon seventh in season opener, Xavi Vierge crashes out
In his first race back from breaking his wrist last year, Jake Dixon put in an impressive performance in the difficult conditions at Losail to end the opening race of 2021 seventh. Unfortunately a Turn 10 crash on lap 15 ended team-mate Xavi Vierge’s QatarGP early.
Dixon made a great start from tenth on the grid, to recover five places on the opening lap. The Brit made it as high as fourth before his wrist began to cause him issues on lap 10, which saw him slide backwards to seventh. Digging deep to not lose too much ground, Jake was not only able to maintain his position throughout but also increased his pace in the closing laps. At the chequered flag Dixon was able to hold on to his seventh place.
The opening race of the year got off to a bad start for team-mate Vierge, who found himself down in 20th on the first lap due to contact with other riders. The Spaniard was quick to recover though and started making his way through the field. Climbing up to 12th in the second half of the race, Xavi looked set to make it into the top-ten. Unfortunately the QatarGP came to an end on lap 15 for Vierge, after contact with another rider on entry to Turn 10 resulted in a crash.
Vierge and Dixon will only have to wait a few days until they are back out on track for the Grand Prix of Doha, also held at Losail International Circuit, next weekend (2-4 April).
Starting from tenth wasn’t ideal but I got a fantastic start and was fifth on the first lap, so I was really happy with that. I knew that I would be good for four or five laps, like in practice, but after that was a bit of an unknown. Clinica Mobile has been great throughout the test and the race weekend in helping me get fit. Ten laps into the race I started suffering with my wrist, making mistakes and I ended up having to brace my arm into my stomach to help me turn. The wind also made it really hard. I’m so happy to finish that race where we did though and maybe now there is something we can look at to help me for next weekend. This year I want to be fighting for the title; I have the team to do it so I’m going to be trying my best to do it.
I want to say sorry to the team because I crashed and did not finish the race. I am so disappointed because we had an amazing pre-season and we were so fast until Friday. Yesterday something changed and I did not have the same feeling, we lost the pace that we had. At the beginning of the race I tried my best but there was contact with a couple of other riders and I lost many positions. I tried to come back through but in the end I crashed. We have a week now to understand what happened and to make sure we are in the positions where we can fight.