As Aprilia celebrates the 125cc world title
Alvaro Bautista (Aprilia) won the (dry) 125cc race in typically convincing fashion – and with it the World Championship.
The Spaniard beat Mika Kallio(KTM) by five seconds to record his seventh win from 13 starts and secure
his first world title. Mattia Pasini (Aprilia) was third.
The 23-lap race was restarted and scheduled for just 15-laps after a lap one, turn one crash involving four riders. Neither Joey Litjens (Arie Molenaar Racing Honda RS125R), nor Sergio Gadea (Aprilia) made the restart.
Bautista made the running, just as he had in the original start, and he made short work of stretching out an unassailable lead. By mid-race he held a 3.8 second advantage over a nine-rider pursuing pack – and nobody could reduce it.
On the last lap a four-way dice ensued for the two remaining podium places and reigning World Champion Thomas Luthi (Elit Grand Prix Honda RS125R) used all his bravery and skill at turn one to stay with the fight – but Kallio's KTM and Pasini's Aprilia had the edge on speed over the Swiss man's Honda.
With 280 points to Kallio's 201, Bautista now reigns in 2006. In the Manufacturers' Championship Aprilia has 303 points, KTM 206 and Honda 145.
125cc HONDA RIDERS' QUOTES:
Thomas Luthi (Elit Honda - 4th): “My first start was good but on the restart I was in the middle of the group and had to fight my way out to get to Kallio, he was not fast from the beginning. We changed a few little things on the engine set up for the warm up and the bike was really good today, the engine was perfect. It was great for me to be back racing at the front and I enjoyed it. Now we have to keep it going for the last three races.”
Fabrizio Lai (Seedorf Racing World - 8th): “I was concentrate also after the red flag. I could make a good restart and did not lose the contact with Bautista and Kallio for some laps. But it wasn't possible for my Honda to maintain the same rhythm of Aprilia and Ktm: I lost to much ground in the straight. Moreover in the last curve they were faster than my and Talmacsi Honda, which have rear-wheel drive problems. Certainly the cool weather let us to colsed down the gap between Honda and other Constructors but it wasn't enough.”
Gabor Talmacsi (Humangest Honda – 9th): “Today the bike was very fast and I want to thanks the team because they did a good job. I could keep the pace of the other riders, but at five laps to go I had to slow down because the rear tyre wore out. The bike was sliding in the curves and I couldn't open the throttle as I did at the beginning. Congratulation to Alvaro Bautista, he really deserves the world title.”
Sandro Cortese (Elit Honda - 14th): “I really enjoyed that race. I got a perfect start and was racing with Koyama, Faubel and De Rosa from early on. When I ran off the track at the last corner my heart stopped - it was scary but I regained control and the track without losing my rhythm. I am happy with my race and scored two points.”
Mike Di Meglio (FFM Honda - 15th): “This morning, the warm up was delayed because there was too much fog; but the weather conditions for the race were good. I took a good start (10th) and after one lap, the race stopped by a red flag because of a collective crash. The race started again for only 15 laps; I was in a group fighting for points but Bradley Smith crashed just in front of me. I could avoid him but I lost the contact with the group. Then I was on my own on this track on which the aspiration is very important and I couldn't catch up with the other riders. I finally finish 15th and score 1 point; I'm a bit disappointed but it's the race and I'm satisfied of the bike because we worked a lot this weekend.”
Michele Conti (Seedorf Racing World - 18th): “It was a good and fun race. I couldn't maintain the contact with the group because with the slipstreams the other riders could easily pass me and had not enough acceleration to follow them. But I'm satisfied because now I have a good pace and I think I could stay within the 15: I have to get a better position on the grid to have the possibility to make a better race.”
Bradley Smith (Repsol Honda - 28th): “After the first start I was really flouted. I got a good start and was a bit hesitant on the second corner about three people passed me. After the first lap I just tried to catch back-up. The four laps before I crashed I was going well. I went faster than my qualifying time, doing consistent lap times and I caught the group in front and things we're looking up. But then I caught a slipstream down the straight and I didn't want to be in the back I just tried to get to the front so I tried to brake straight away, like out braking. I don't know maybe I had a different line to Sandro (Cortese) but it looked as if he was going wide and I just went through the inside and as he cut back it was just too close So I thought I had to pick it up and as I picked up he must have caught my front end and down I went. But I got back on and finished. The position wasn't good for me but at least I finished which is better than just retiring or something like that. It's a shame but my head's up, we had a good weekend, it's been positive and now we're on to Japan.”
Michele Pirro (Humangest Honda – dnf): “I am not able to ride this bike and to feel confident on the Honda, so I decided to retire in the pit garage. I'm really sorry as I am not using the chance that has been offered to me.”
Tito Rabat (Wurth Honda BQR - dnf – crash): “What can I say? I was going into the bottom of the dip on the brakes and Sandi torpedoed me and we both crashed. It was not necessary we were racing for 16th place, we could not score any points. Before that I was having a good race, enjoying myself. I got a good start and the bike was good, my engine was fast my lap times were not so bad - not super good. My tyres were also good at the end of the race so I could have help Sandi behind me.”
Joey Litjens (Molenaar Honda - dnf – crash): “Gadea made a dumb mistake, how could he do such a thing? It was a shock when he hit me I saw him on the grass but no way I expected that to happen. He ruined my whole weekend. I really like this track and was happy with my start and was in a good position. Instead of having a fun race on a great track - now all I have is cut fingers and a badly swollen hand and a damaged bike. It's so disappointing.”
Press Release HRC