Quiles snatches Rookies win from Piqueras in dash for Jerez finish
Maximo Quiles robbed Angel Piqueras of his 4th Rookies Cup victory on the run in to the line chased by Álvaro Carpe for an all-Spanish Jerez podium.
The 200th Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup race was another stunner with Argentinian 15-year-old Marco Morelli also featuring in the lead battle for much of the race and finally taking 4th when Finnish 15-year-old Rico Salmela was dropped a place for exceeding track limits on the final lap of his brilliant late race charge.
15-year-old Quiles did most of the leading after a superb start from pole but 16-year-old Piqueras was quickly into a close second. 15-year-old Carpe had a lot of work to do from 10th on the grid but wasted no time and soon made it a KTM trio that the rest of the pack struggled to match.
Saturday’s podium man Jacob Roulstone and Ruche Moodley along with Salmela all played a part in towing the chasing pack back into contention but it never quite stuck.
Màximo Quiles did what he needed to: “Not so bad, a very good race, I had very good rhythm. When I saw that we had quite a lot of gap over the main group I slowed down a bit to give the tyres a rest but increased the pace again when the gap closed. I had quite a lot of confidence. In the last lap, I knew that he was going to try it so I prepared for the better exit. The only problem was that I was on the left side and I am not used to brake there so I didn’t have my usual reference I braked very badly and he could overtake me.Then I got a better exit and I could finish first. I know I have to keep finishing in front of him, I have very good rhythm and I think I can do it.”
Angel Piqueras tried for win 4:“I’m happy because P2 is a very good thing for the championship. I have to be happy because winning 3 of the 4 races this year so far is a good situation. It was a hard race, we were battling all the way. I had the strategy for the last corner, I thought I did it, I was in front but finally, Maximo passed me on the straight. The bike was good, the bracket for the dash broke, but it didn’t really slow me. I knew I had a track limits warning but I was pushing a lot, that will happen.”
Álvaro Carpe right on the pace:“What can I say, it was a very hard race and very quick. In the two first laps, the three first riders made a gap. I closed the gap quickly and we had a great battle all the race. Finally I am on the podium. In the last laps, I was not really looking for a way to win the race. For me getting good points is very important and I knew that I would have to take a big risk if I was going to try and win. For me 3rd at the Spanish Grand Prix is very good, I want to say thanks to all the staff for their support.”
Marco Morelli showed his potential:“Yes, this race was better than yesterday, I did some things differently and I could stay in the front group, that’s very positive. I am happy with that and happy that I could run in the front group, it’s been a few years since I raced at the front like that.In the last laps I was pushing the limit but the front group was just too fast. I wanted to take a podium but today it is not possible, maybe in Le Mans… I don’t know.”
Rico Salmela missed gear and opportunity: “The race was pretty good, the start of the race was again a bit difficult, it was better than yesterday. I made a comeback, I came from P10 and caught the first group. Then at about 3 laps to go, I made one mistake, I hit neutral going into Turn 1, and I made a bit of a stoppie, then I went wide. But after this, I passed the rider in P4 and gain I managed to catch the first group but again in the last lap in Turn 1 I hit neutral. So it was a bit difficult but it was an OK race. I am not so happy but at the same time, I am really happy. I made some good overtakes…. But still, in Le Mans I want to make the podium or a victory,” he grinned.
Ruche Moodley gaining speed and experience in 8th: “I wasn’t as fast as I wanted to be but there were some good things from this weekend for experience and I need to find out where to get faster to stay with the guys at the front.I think that yesterday, in the first few laps I was better but today more consistent. We did change the bike a little after yesterday to make the rear stop sliding so much and it felt a bit better. The big thing now is that I need to change my style a little bit and ride the corners more stop and go, the line more like a V. At the moment I brake very deep into the corner and I am not getting the drive out.”
Edoardo Boggio finally got to race but in pain and 13th:“At the start, my hand was in a lot of pain after the fall yesterday. I was 4th but the other guys passed me because I was slower than them. Then I was in a group with Danish, Ruda and Luciano but in the last 6 laps I didn’t have the strength in my right hand and I couldn’t brake hard so I finished P13.”
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