RAINY DAY JOY FOR MAHINDRA AT MISANO
Misano Adriatico, Italy 10 September 2017: A sodden and treacherous Misano World Circuit brought the best result of the season for the only Indian constructor in the World Championship, with two riders in the top ten and two more in the points-scoring positions – steadfast survivors in a race of attrition, with no less than 23 crashes.
In fact, the top MGP3O finisher, Saxoprint team rider Jakub Kornfeil, on a Peugeot-badged MGP3O, did slip off on the fifth of 23 laps at the 4.226 km circuit. But the experienced 24-year old Czech racer was able to scramble back on board. He lost 15 places, and then had to forfeit one more, penalised for an illegal overtake. But with a determined recovery ride he forged his way through to a season-best seventh.
One of his last victims was Aspar Mahindra rider Albert Arenas, who finished a close eighth, one of very few riders to experience an incident-free race, and taking full profit after starting from 26th on the grid. It was also the 20-year old Spaniard’s best finish of the year.
The next Mahindra rider in the points was Manuel Pagliani (CIP Mahindra), who missed the top ten by one place, one race after opening his points account two weeks ago, when he finished 15th at Silverstone.
Second Aspar Mahindra rider Lorenzo Dalla Porta also fell and remounted, finishing one lap down but taking a point for 15th.
Hopes were dashed for Marco Bezzecchi. The CIP Mahindra rider was running well up in the points when he slipped off. He remounted, and had moved back into the points when he fell again.
There was heartbreak also for Saxoprint class rookie Patrik Pulkkinen. The 16-year old Finn was set for his first points as he started the last lap in 13th … but he too fell. Unable to restart, he pushed the bike over the line, but was disqualified for being out of time.
The race was won by a huge margin by Romano Fenati (Honda), his second of the season; with championship leader Joan Mir (Honda) a distant and lonely second.
The next race is at Aragon in Spain in two weeks, before the GP circus packs up for the flyaway round in three gruelling consecutive weekends, in Japan, Australia and Malaysia.