Raul Fernandez fights hard at the front in Qatar08/03/2020
The Spaniard starts the 2020 season with a Top 10 finish, whilst Kaito Toba places 14th at Losail.
The 2020 Moto3 World Championship season got its official start with the opening race of the year this Sunday. Red Bull KTM Ajo team put in a solid performance in a tough contest, run in groups with incessant overtaking exchanges. Raul Fernandez challenged for victory, fighting at the front over the course of the 18-lap race to finish in the Top 10. Kaito Toba placed 14th in the Qatar GP.
Fernandez got off the line well, holding his second place grid position. He led the way on several occasions as the riders at the front tussled continuously. Due to the tyre-wear, Raul yielded several positions, moving to the back of the pack. After an intense last part of the race in which he climbed up the order, he crossed the finish line ninth. However, the Spaniard was relegated to tenth due to his exceeding the track limits on the last lap.
Starting from the fourth row of the grid, Kaito Toba would give up two places on the opening corner. He would, however, end the first lap in 14th. Riding in the chasing pack, his lap times matched those of the riders at the front. Although he would drop down the order midway through, he was able to recover and claim points with a 14th place finish.
Raul Fernandez is 10th in the overall standings with 6 points, and Kaito Toba is 14th with 2 points. After the cancellation of the Thai GP, the next event for the Moto3 World Championship will be the GP of The Americas, which will take place from April 3rd to 5th at the Circuit of the Americas.
Results (Moto3 Race)
1. Albert Arenas (KTM) 38:08.941
2. John McPhee (Honda) +0.053
3. Ai Ogura (Honda) +0.344
4. Jaume Masia (Honda) +0.247
5. Tatuski Suzuki (Honda) +0.789
10. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +0.834
14. Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +2.790
Moto3 World Championship Standing 2019
1. Albert Arenas (KTM) 25 points
2. John McPhee (Honda) 20 points
3. Ai Ogura (Honda) 16 points
4. Jaume Masia (Honda) 13 points
5. Tatuski Suzuki (Honda) 11 points
10. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 6 points
14. Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 2 points
AKI AJO – TEAM MANAGER
“We did a good job during preseason with the Moto3 team. This weekend we continued to progress, despite the fact that in the race we felt we could have obtained a better result. Even so, I’m very happy with the performances by Raul [Fernandez] and Kaito [Toba] both in the tests and at this Grand Prix. I am sure that, when we gain more experience together, we will be ready to fight for the podium.”
25 RAUL FERNANDEZ
“It was a bittersweet contest, since during the entire weekend I felt very comfortable riding in the Top 5, but it was different today in the race. We took off very well, but when the tyre performance started to drop I could not go as fast. Even so, we did a good job and now we must do our best to continue improving – and get well prepared for the next Grand Prix.”
27 KAITO TOBA
“It wasn’t really a good race for me. However, we managed to get into the points, which is very important for the World Championship standings. I suffered a lot during the entire contest, since I couldn’t overtake and I had to stay behind other riders, waiting for them to make a mistake. Now it is time to work to be stronger at the next Grand Prix, especially in terms of braking. We will continue to fight to be up at the front.”