Rabat dominates Jerez to take first ever victory, Espargaro fights hard for third place, Pons crashes early
On Mother’s Day in Spain, Tito Rabat gave the best present to his mother who’s been watching from above as he took his first ever victory at Jerez after also taking his first pole position and moving to the top of the championship standings.
Starting from pole position, Tito immediately started to push, leaving the competition behind quickly and finally crossing the finish line with an advantage of over four seconds on second place rider Scott Redding. An absolutely dominant victory, being untouchable from start to finish.
Teammate Pol Espargaró completed the podium celebrations, despite struggling with a lot of setup problems, especially with grip, throughout the entire weekend. In th end he took the third position on the rostrum. He moved into third with two laps to go after an exciting battle with Japanese rider Takaaki Nakagami and he is now third in the championship, eleven points behind his teammate.
Axel Pons was unlucky at his home race, being the victim of a multiple crash in the second lap after which he had to give up the race with a damaged bike.
1. TITO RABAT “Taking my first pole and my first victory in Jerez, in front of the Spanish fans, it’s an amazing feeling and something very hard to describe. I want to dedicate this win, which I have pursued for so long, to my mother on such a special day. The team has done a fantastic job, the bike was perfect and I wasn’t nervous at any time. I rode comfortably, focused and saw on the pitboard how the gap increased with every lap. I wasn’t nervous at all and in the end I got my first victory in the world chhampionship and took over the lead. The championship is very long, but I feel good with the bike and the team and I’d like to continue this way in the coming races. I want to thank everyone who helped me get here and I hope to keep giving them joys like this one.
3. POL ESPARGARÓ “It’s been a very hard race and in the end I took a risk, because you can’t miss out on a podium at home. During the whole weekend I struggled with a lack of grip and in the race that didn’t change. The duel with Nakagami was fun and I almost didn’t pass him because of a backmarker. I hope to have less problems with the setup in Le Mans and a lot of patience, because the championship is very long and a lot of things can happen.”
AXEL PONS “I am very disappointed, because it’s tough not to complete two laps at a home race. We had a season start with problems in the qualifyings and starting from far behind. And I also didn’t have any luck in the first laps, like today when a wildcard rider took me out. I hope this completed my list of misfortunes and now I will start moving up.”
Source: Pons Racing