Valuable learning experience for Holgado at Qatar Grand Prix06/03/2022
The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 rookie finishes 16th, overcoming discomfort in his left leg. Jaume Masia is taken out of the race by another rider.
The Lusail International Circuit hosted the first race of the 2022 Moto3 World Championship season this Sunday, as the Qatar Grand Prix got the campaign underway. Dani Holgado enjoyed a solid performance in the contest, but a penalty picked up on the final lap for exceeding the track limits prevented him from scoring points, relegating him to 16th place. Jaume Masia was riding in the podium positions when, on Lap 10, he was knocked down by another competitor and was forced to retire.
Masia started the Qatar Grand Prix in second, benefitting from penalties imposed on several Moto3 riders. The Spaniard maintained his position on the starting grid through the first corner, joining up with the leading group. With the race leader escaping, the chasing pack engaged in a constant exchange of overtaking moves, with the intelligent Masia always within the Top 5. Unfortunately, the Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 talent crashed out at Turn 12 of Lap 10 after contact with another competitor.
From the fourth row, Holgado gained several positions when the lights went out. The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 rookie dropped places on the opening lap, but slotted into the second group. Fending off a series of overtaking attempts, the Spaniard eventually placed 15th, although he would be awarded 16th due to his having exceeded the track limits on the final lap.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 duo will now enjoy a week off before heading to the second round of the season, the Indonesian Grand Prix, which takes place from March 18-20th.
Results (Moto3 Race)
1. Andrea Migno (Honda) 37:59.522
2. Sergio Garcia (GasGas) +0.037
3. Kaito Toba (KTM) +0.573
4. Deniz Öncü (KTM) +0.594
5. John McPhee (Husqvarna) +1.064
16. Dani Holgado (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +12.999
DNF. Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
Moto3 World Championship Standing 2022
1. Andrea Migno (Honda) 25 points
2. Sergio Garcia (GasGas) 20 points
3. Kaito Toba (KTM) 16 points
4. Deniz Öncü (KTM) 13 points
5. John McPhee (Husqvarna) 11 points
16. Dani Holgado (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 0 points
DNF. Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
AKI AJO – TEAM MANAGAR
“It hasn’t been our best day in Moto3. Jaume [Masia] had a really good speed today and he would even have been able to fight for the win. It was very unfortunate what happened, as another rider pushed him wide during the race, but on the other hand this is the first contest of the season and we know that we have the potential to fight. In Moto3 many things can happen, so we need to use everything for learning, to focus for the long campaign, and to fight for the top positions again at the next GP. For Daniel [Holgado] the weekend was good. It’s a great start in the World Championship and, considering his injury a few weeks ago, we’re happy that he finished the race 16th. I’m sure that he took a lot from this contest and when he recovers, he’ll be able to fight in the top ten as well.”
#5 JAUME MASIA
“It was a shame how the race ended for us, because we were controlling our position within the group quite well. We were comfortable fighting in the pack, and we were preparing for the end of the contest. Unfortunately, these things happen during races, but we will try to shake off this bittersweet taste at the upcoming Grands Prix.”
#96 DANI HOLGADO
“It was quite a tough race for me, especially because it was so long. I will take away the fact that at the beginning I had a good pace, and I was fast. I’m happy because I have improved in terms of my feeling, but at the end of the contest we had some issues because I still have some discomfort from the injury I recently suffered. We will continue working to take steps forward in Indonesia. I want to thank the team and my family for their support.”