2011 Sepang 125cc Race Result: Thrilling Race Decided On Final Lap

Results and summary of the 125cc race at Sepang:

Maverick Vinales has won a tense and draining battle at Sepang to take victory ahead of Sandro Cortese and Johann Zarco. Zarco's podium, finishing ahead of Nico Terol, means the championship fight will go down to the wire, with Terol leading by 20 points.

Terol got his usual strong start, leading away from the line, but further down the field, Johann Zarco made a lightning start, determined to make up for the errors of Saturday, firing his way through the field up into 6th. Behind Terol, a small group formed, Vinales with Terol, Hector Faubel, Johann Zarco, Sandro Cortese, Efren Vazquez and Jonas Folger chasing. Vazquez and Folger slowly dropped off the back, leaving a group of five at the front to fight it out.

Terol appeared to have the race in hand for the first half of the race, while Zarco was clearly pushing as hard as he could to get close enough to his title rival to launch an attack on Terol. Vinales, who had been stalking Terol throughout, launched an attack on lap 8, and Terol appeared to get ruffled. A fascinating battle ensued, with Zarco ahead of Terol for a while, before Terol regrouped and fought his way back to the lead again. Vinales and Cortese chased Terol down again, and as Cortese poised to attack Terol, the Spaniard opened the gas just a fraction early, the first sign that his tires were paying the price in the withering tropical heat. Cortese and Vinales came past, and Zarco was right on the back of Terol once again.

Cortese attacked Vinales at the start of the final lap, but Vinales would not be denied, the Blusens rider going on to take his 3rd win of the season, holding off Cortese with relative ease. Terol's hold on 3rd looked secure, but a huge moment at the combination of Turns 5 and 6 saw him nearly highsided and run off the track, handing 3rd over to Zarco and going on to lose two places, dropping down to 5th and losing his chance to wrap up the title at Sepang.

The title chase now goes down to the final race at Valencia. Terol has to finish 11th at what is effectively his home Grand Prix to become champion, while Zarco has to win to have any chance of taking the title.

Results:

Pos. No. Rider Manufacturer Time Diff
1 25 Maverick VIÑALES APRILIA 40'34.280  
2 11 Sandro CORTESE APRILIA 40'34.634 0.354
3 5 Johann ZARCO DERBI 40'36.735 2.455
4 55 Hector FAUBEL APRILIA 40'37.201 2.921
5 18 Nicolas TEROL APRILIA 40'44.329 10.049
6 94 Jonas FOLGER APRILIA 40'52.244 17.964
7 63 Zulfahmi KHAIRUDDIN DERBI 41'12.986 38.706
8 84 Jakub KORNFEIL APRILIA 41'13.379 39.099
9 23 Alberto MONCAYO APRILIA 41'13.503 39.223
10 52 Danny KENT APRILIA 41'14.517 40.237
11 7 Efren VAZQUEZ DERBI 41'29.086 54.806
12 10 Alexis MASBOU KTM 41'42.171 1'07.891
13 99 Danny WEBB MAHINDRA 41'42.187 1'07.907
14 28 Josep RODRIGUEZ APRILIA 41'42.379 1'08.099
15 19 Alessandro TONUCCI APRILIA 41'42.436 1'08.156
16 8 Jack MILLER KTM 41'49.510 1'15.230
17 30 Giulian PEDONE APRILIA 41'52.983 1'18.703
18 96 Louis ROSSI APRILIA 41'53.193 1'18.913
19 50 Sturla FAGERHAUG APRILIA 42'04.550 1'30.270
20 32 Arthur SISSIS APRILIA 42'06.090 1'31.810
21 17 Taylor MACKENZIE APRILIA 42'07.530 1'33.250
22 60 Manuel TATASCIORE APRILIA 42'24.970 1'50.690
23 40 Marco COLANDREA APRILIA 42'36.532 2'02.252
24 64 Farid BADRUL DERBI 42'51.248 2'16.968
Not Classified
  14 Brad BINDER APRILIA 37'04.152 2 laps
  26 Adrian MARTIN APRILIA 26'39.420 8 laps
  3 Luigi MORCIANO APRILIA 18'37.683 10 laps
  21 Harry STAFFORD APRILIA 18'38.099 10 laps
  77 Marcel SCHROTTER MAHINDRA 11'33.204 13 laps
  39 Luis SALOM APRILIA    
  53 Jasper IWEMA APRILIA    
  36 Joan PERELLO APRILIA    

 

2011
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Comments

I'm really surprised with how much sadness I'm feeling over what happened in the MotoGP class yesterday. Those professionals just make the extraordinary acts they perform every race weekend look so smooth and routine, it's easy to take for granted that there aren't such crazy risks involved.

Because that story is deservedly taking the focus of the weekend, I hesitantly ask if anyone know what Terol's deal was at the end of the race on the cool down lap. I think he rode an incredibly hard race, and for his multiple bobbles in the saddle as his tires lost grip, it's amazing that he managed to hold on and finish in the position he did.

So was it just youthful exhaustion-fueled drama by Terol on the cool-down lap when he parked the bike and collapsed behind the barriers, or had he tweaked his body somewhat in one of the almost-off's he had during the race? It did not look like his boss was happy with either his finishing position or his "antics" (if they were emotional antics, or if he had given himself a major charley-horse/cramp and had to legitimately get off the bike or else he might lose it).