Masia takes Honda’s 800th win in Aragon thriller

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Masia’s first win since Argentina 2019 last weekend made him Honda’s 100th winner in grand prix racing, with his second Aragon triumph – coming after a penultimate corner pass – giving HRC its 800th victory across all grand prix classes.

Tony Arbolino on his return from a COVID-19-related absence last weekend grabbed the holeshot from second on the grid, though poleman Raul Fernandez immediately retaliated at the first corner.

Arbolino got shoved back by the VR46 KTM of Celestino Vietti and championship leader Arenas through the next few turns, before the latter hit the front for the first time at the penultimate corner.

The lead group in the early laps was over 20 bikes, with the battle at the front frantic as the likes of Vietti, Fernandez and his Ajo KTM team-mate Kaito Toba took turns leading the field.

Arenas scythed past Toba at Turn 1 on lap 10 to retake the lead, and resisted several attempts by Masia over the new few tours.

The speed of Arenas’ Aspar-run KTM proved tough for Masia to overhaul on his Leopard Honda on the straight, while the former’s strength in braking made him almost impossible to overtake.

But Masia finally made a move stick into Turn 1 having nailed his run from the final corner on lap 17, though Arenas would be back ahead six turns later.

Masia got ahead of Arenas into Turn 1 at the start of the final lap, but once again Arenas struck back at Turn 7 and looked like he’d hold onto his lead as he got a brilliant exit onto the back straight.

But the Leopard rider blasted through into the penultimate corner, opening the door for Tech3’s Ayumu Sasaki and Toba to come through on Arenas too.

Masia held on by 0.051 seconds on the run to the line to get himself back into championship contention, with Sasaki claiming his and Tech3’s maiden Moto3 podium.
Toba hasn’t had a top six since last year’s French GP, with his best result a ninth place in 2020.

But the KTM rider made it two Japanese riders on the podium in third, with Arenas fourth after being mugged through the final bends.

Vietti completed the top five ahead of Petronas Sprinta’s John McPhee, who came from 17th on the grid, with this sister Tech3 KTM of Deniz Oncu, CIPs Darryn Binder, Honda Team Asia’s Ai Ogura and the Snipers Honda of Arbolino completing the top 10.

Despite missing the podium, Ogura’s ninth means Arenas’ championship lead has opened up to 19 over the Japanese rider with just three races to go.

Vietti is a further point adrift in third, while Masia is now 24 points behind in fourth.

Despite the raging dogfight throughout the race, only two riders failed to finish when Tatsuki Suzuki crashed exiting Turn 9 on the last lap in front of EG 0,0 Honda’s Sergio Garcia and left him with no choice but to hit the stricken SIC58 bike.

Teruel Moto3 result – 19 laps

PosRiderTeamBikeGap
1Jaume MasiaLeopard RacingHonda37m44.602s
2Ayumu SasakiRed Bull KTM Tech 3KTM0.051s
3Kaito TobaRed Bull KTM AjoKTM0.152s
4Albert ArenasSolunion Aspar Team Moto3KTM0.296s
5Celestino ViettiSKY Racing Team VR46KTM0.331s
6John McPheePetronas Sprinta RacingHonda0.372s
7Deniz OncuRed Bull KTM Tech 3KTM0.583s
8Darryn BinderCIP – Green PowerKTM0.772s
9Ai OguraHonda Team AsiaHonda0.955s
10Tony ArbolinoRivacold Snipers TeamHonda2.259s
11Alonso LopezSterilgarda Max Racing TeamHusqvarna2.489s
12Raul FernandezRed Bull KTM AjoKTM2.493s
13Filip SalacRivacold Snipers TeamHonda2.520s
14Gabriel RodrigoKommerling Gresini Moto3Honda2.686s
15Jeremy AlcobaKommerling Gresini Moto3Honda2.745s
16Dennis FoggiaLeopard RacingHonda2.895s
17Carlos TatayReale Avintia Moto3KTM3.019s
18Andrea MignoSKY Racing Team VR46KTM3.622s
19Romano FenatiSterilgarda Max Racing TeamHusqvarna5.448s
20Stefano NepaSolunion Aspar Team Moto3KTM5.620s
21Barry BaltusCarXpert PruestelGPKTM5.680s
22Niccolo AntonelliSIC58 Squadra CorseHonda6.103s
23Ryusei YamanakaEstrella Galicia 0,0Honda16.543s
24Jason DupasquierCarXpert PruestelGPKTM21.606s
25Yuki KuniiHonda Team AsiaHonda21.716s
26Davide PizzoliBOE Skull Rider Facile EnergyKTM21.812s
27Khairul Idham PawiPetronas Sprinta RacingHonda32.799s
28Maximilian KoflerCIP – Green PowerKTM33.600s
Tatsuki SuzukiSIC58 Squadra CorseHondaRetirement
Sergio GarciaEstrella Galicia 0,0HondaRetirement

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