Impressive 6th place for Bendsneyder after crash at Misano


Dutch rider finishes crash-filled wet San Marino GP, in which he had to fight back after a fall. Niccolo Antonelli is unable to complete the race.

The weather forecasts for the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli on raceday proved to be correct, as the Moto3 field were greeted by heavy rain for their 11am showdown. The Red Bull KTM Ajo riders had mixed fortunes in a wet race: Bo Bendsneyder finished sixth, making a great comeback after falling; while Niccolo Antonelli suffered two crashes, ending his home Grand Prix disappointed. The result for Bendsneyder has special merit taking into account that only 15 riders finished the race.

Starting from seventh on the grid, Bendsneyder was up into fourth by the end of the opening lap. He maintained the spot for several laps, until he suffered a crash at Turn 4 on the seventh lap around the Misano track. Showing great courage, he picked his bike back up and rejoined the race in 20th position. Lap by lap, Bendsneyder regained a good feeling before finishing sixth -after fighting with two other riders.

The day became an uphill struggle for Antonelli, who started the day with a penalty of 12 positions on the grid for irresponsible riding in qualifying. Taking off from twentieth position, in just five laps the home rider was up into twelfth and fighting for the Top 10, but a fall at Turn 6 slowed his progression. Like his teammate, Antonelli decided to remount and try for points. After another fantastic comeback from twenty-fifth to fifteenth position, he unfortunately crashed again at Turn 16, four laps from the end.

With the 10 points earned today, Bo Bendsneyder is thirteenth in the overall standings with 48 points; Antonelli is twentieth with 16. The Moto3 World Championship will return to action in two weeks’ time for the fourteenth event of the year: The Aragon GP, between September 22nd-24th. It is a special track for the Red Bull KTM Ajo team, as it is where Brad Binder was proclaimed World Champion last year.

Aki Ajo – Team Manager
“Today the track provided very delicate conditions, so I am very happy with Bo Bendsneyder’s race. He didn’t do anything crazy in the beginning, but it’s normal in these conditions to suffer a crash at any time. After crashing he managed to remain calm and finish the race in a very good position; I’m happy because today was very tough. It was also a positive race for Niccolo [Antonelli], who was trying hard from the beginning and unfortunately crashed. The second fall came because he was pushing; in that situation it was necessary and I am satisfied that he pushed.”

Results (Race)
1. Romano Fenati (Honda) 46:24.290
2. Joan Mir (Honda) +28.594
3. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Honda) +39.035
4. Philipp Oettl (KTM) +55.591
5. Nicolo Bulega (KTM) +1:02.433
6. Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +1:09.312
-. Niccolo Antonelli (Red Bull KTM Ajo) DNF

Moto3 World Championship Standing 2017
1. Joan Mir (Honda) 246 points
2. Romano Fenati (Honda) 185 points
3. Aron Canet (Honda) 162 points
4. Jorge Martin (Honda) 121 points
5. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Honda) 117 points
13. Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 48 points
20. Niccolo Antonelli (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 16 points


“Today was quite difficult, and in the warmup we saw that it would be very difficult to ride in these conditions; it was hard to have confidence. I wanted to give everything and try, because we are reaching the end of the season and I feel good and confident about getting good results. I don’t understand much about the first crash, because I was riding completely straight. For the second, I was riding pretty hard and I felt good, but when I got into a corner I lost the rear. It was a mistake, although today many riders fell and it was very difficult to complete the entire race. I’ll take away the fact that we fought hard and we made a comeback. That’s the positive thing.”

“I’m quite happy because after the crash it was the best position I could have finished in; the difference to the closest other rider was very large. I gave my all; I learned from my mistake and I remained calm. It was very important to be able to finish the race and to pick up points, finishing in a good position, considering how hard it rained. In short, I’m happy about how the race went; of course I would have liked to have kept up the place I had at the beginning, but I’ll take away the fact that I learned from my mistake in the initial stretch. That’s the most positive thing.”