Current Mapfre Aspar Moto2 rider and the last ever 125cc champion Nico Terol has signed a new two-year deal to stay with the Aspar team and continue to race in Moto2. The team issued the following press release after the signing:
MAPFRE ASPAR TEAM AGREE NEW TWO-YEAR DEAL WITH NICO TEROL
Reward for Spanish rider's rapid adaptation to Moto2 and mutual esteem between the two parties
MAPFRE Aspar Team and Nico Terol have reached an agreement to continue their collaboration for another two seasons. Negotiations reached a swift conclusion, allowing the rider and the team to turn their focus back to the remaining five races of the current season. Having signed for the team in 2010 Nico finished runner-up in the 125cc class in his first season before becoming the last ever two-stroke World Champion the following year. The Spaniard then made the step up to the intermediate Moto2 category with the MAPFRE Aspar Team in 2012.
The season started out steadily as the rider and team followed a careful plan of adaptation but slowly the results have started to come and Terol continues to close the gap to the front. The team is aware of the rider's potential and his ability to be a Moto2 frontrunner in 2013, just as he did during his time in 125.
The first Moto2 round held at Misano under its new name, the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, left us a clear idea of Marc Marquez’s intentions to become world champion by the end of this season, before he will join one of the toughest groups of riders ever in the MotoGP class in 2013.
Márquez’s seventh win of the season at Misano last weekend –third in a row- over Pol Espargaró and Andrea Iannone takes the Spaniard further ahead in the point standings with 238, while Espargaró stands second with 185. Iannone is third with 165 points and Luthi fourth with 161. Far behind, the young British rider Scott Redding stands fifth with 115 points.
With five rounds still to go and even Redding still in with a mathematical chances of becoming champion, the 2012 Moto2 season seems to be in Marquez’s hands. In fact, if Márquez wins in Aragon and Japan too, with Espargaró or Iannone finishing second, the Spaniard could even become champion in Malaysia with two rounds still to go. It could happen even earlier: in the case that Márquez wins the next round at Aragon and Espargaró DNFs, the Cataluyna Caixa Suter rider could celebrate his Moto2 world title on the following round at Motegi.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after the races at Misano:
Results and summary of a scintillating Moto2 race at Misano:
Results and summary of a scintillating Moto2 race at Misano:
The Moto2 session was briefly red-flagged for a nasty-looking crash by Ratthapark Wilairot. The Thai rider was immobilized and transported to the medical center, where he was diagnosed with a suspected leg fracture. He was described as being "conscious, but confused", suggesting he took a good bang to the head in the crash.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after qualifying at Misano:
Results and summary of qualifying for the Moto2 class at Misano:
Simone Corsi has topped the final session of free practice for the Moto2 class, the first session to be held under conditions approaching normal. The Italian was the fastest of a trio who all posted faster times in the end, taking charge at the top of the timesheets. Mika Kallio set the 2nd fastest time, the Marc VDS Racing rider having featured at the top of the timesheets throughout the session, while Marc Marquez made good progress through FP3 to end in 3rd. Less than a tenth of a second covered the top 3.
The late charge led by Corsi demoted Scott Redding into 4th, the young British rider having topped the timesheet for most of FP3. Pol Espargaro was 5th fastest, finishing well ahead of Johann Zarco in 6th.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after the first day of practice at Misano:
The weather continues to take center stage at Misano, with the rain wreaking the same kind of havoc on FP2 for Moto2 as it had for all of the previous sessions. At the end of the damp session, Xavier Simeon ended at the top of the timesheets, just over a tenth quicker than Claudio Corti, while Andrea Iannone took 3rd. Johan Zarco ended up in 4th, ahead of Julian Simon and Thomas Luthi, while Marcel Schrotter took advantage of the damp conditions to put the SAG Bimota into 7th. Marc Marquez finally took to the track in the afternoon, after skipping the morning session, but the Spaniard took it easy, managing just the 12th fastest time. His championship rival Pol Espargaro did the same, the HP Tuenti rider ending up down in 18th.
With light rain falling on and off throughout the morning, conditions at Misano are difficult, so difficult in fact that Marc Marquez, sitting on a comfortable lead in the championship, decided to sit the session out rather than risk injury in a fairly meaningless Moto2 practice session. At the end of FP1 it was Johann Zarco who came out on top of the session, taking top spot right at the end, and deposing Gino Rea at the end. The British rider had led the session for the last ten minutes or so, before losing out in the final seconds. Ant West took 3rd, shining as ever in tricky conditions, while Andrea Iannone bagged 4th, despite a rather stupid crash when he turned round to shake his fist at another rider who had been sitting on the racing line.
The return to Misano was always going to be an emotional affair, the first time MotoGP has returned to Marco Simoncelli's home circuit - now renamed in his honor - since the Italian fan favorite was killed in a tragic accident at Sepang last October. Though Simoncelli is being remembered in many different ways during the weekend - nearly all of the riders in all three classes joined for a lap of the track by bicycle this evening - the remembrance has been cheerful rather than mawkish, a celebration of his life rather than mourning at his death. Fans, riders, mechanics, photographers, journalists, many have made the pilgrimage to Coriano, Simoncelli's home town just a few short miles from the track, paid their respects and headed to the circuit feeling better for the experience. Simoncelli's ghost may haunt the paddock at Misano, but happily, he does so in the guise of Casper rather than Banquo.
There is more than enough to keep the minds of those present engaged. Uppermost in most people's minds is Ben Spies decision to go to Ducati to race in the Ducati junior team to be run by Pramac. Both of the 2013 factory Ducati riders welcomed the signing of both Spies and Andrea Iannone, with Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden saying it was a good decision by Ducati. Both Spies and Iannone had proven their speed, and Spies experience at the factory Yamaha team would be very valuable to Ducati in helping to develop the bike. There was surprise at Spies' decision - "I thought he would go to World Superbikes" Dovizioso told reporters - and both men were interested to see how he would perform on the Ducati.