Sublime first victory in Moto2 for Fernandez, Gardner third in Portugal

18/04/2021

The Spaniard wins in his third race in the class, with his teammate, Remy Gardner, completing the podium double for Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2.

 

Red Bull KTM Ajo had a dream race on Sunday at the Portuguese Grand Prix, with Raul Fernandez claiming his first victory in the class and Remy Gardner getting on the podium for the third consecutive round. In just his third Moto2 contest, the Spaniard put in an assured performance to take the chequered flag over a second and a half ahead of his nearest rival. With a third place finish, Gardner moved up to the top spot in the overall standings.

The Portuguese GP started well for Raul Fernandez, who moved up from tenth to sixth when the lights went out. The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 rookie did his best to join the chasing pack, which was trying to hunt down the race leader. When they moved to the front, he had his chance to burst through, and with four laps remaining Fernandez took the lead and put together a run of two fast laps, breaking away from his rivals. His third career Grand Prix triumph came in his third appearance in Moto2, as he opened his account in the class.

Remy Gardner took advantage of his position on the front row and claimed the holeshot at Portimao. However, shortly after, the Australian was overtaken by another rider, who tried to break away. Gardner remained in the chasing group, amidst plenty of overtaking moves. That group would be split before the end, and he fought hard on the last lap to get third place and an eighth World Championship podium.

Remy Gardner leads the Moto2 World Championship standings with 56 points, whilst Raul Fernandez is second with 52. The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 duo will be back in action in two weeks’ time at the Jerez-Angel Nieto Circuit, where the Spanish GP will take place from April 30th to May 2nd.

Results (Moto2 Race)

1. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 39:47.377
2. Aron Canet (Boscoscuro) +1.600
3. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +1.968
4. Joe Roberts (Kalex) +2.397
5. Augusto Fernandez (Kalex) +5.622

Moto2 World Championship Standing 2021

1. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 56 points
2. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 52 points
3. Sam Lowes (Kalex) 50 points
4. Marco Bezzecchi (Kalex) 36 points
5. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Kalex) 27 points

Aki Ajo – Team Manager

“I’m extremely happy about performances from two Moto2 riders today, with both finishing on the podium. The track conditions were difficult and several mistakes were made, so we have to be satisfied with the results that we achieved. Raul [Fernandez] has done a great job at the start of his rookie year and has adapted very quickly to the class. As for Remy [Gardner]; I am impressed by his work and how he is able to constantly take steps forward. The most important thing now is to keep pushing ourselves, as we have been doing so far, and to stay focused.”

87 REMY GARDNER

“I’m happy with the result. Maybe I expected a little more from Portugal, seeing as how last year went well and bearing in mind how all the practice sessions had gone, but in the race, it was a bit more tough. My tyres had gone by the end and I made quite a few mistakes that I need to improve on for the future, but I’m happy to be able to round off the weekend with a podium. These points are good for the World Championship and we must continue working hard for the rest of the year.”

25 RAUL FERNANDEZ

“I have no words to describe how I feel after taking my first Moto2 victory. We were not expecting it, as we were very far back after two of my laps in qualifying were cancelled out. However, this morning in the warm-up I already felt good. I’m happy with how the race went, especially the final part, which is what we had been finding most difficult so far. I want to thank the team because they have become a second family for me. They are the people who give me the strength to fight to win.”

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