Guevara Bows Out With a Dominant Win

guevara wins in valencia crew on two

The World Champion led every lap en route to his seventh win of the Moto3 season.

After taking pole position on Saturday, Moto2-bound Izan Guevara was showing no signs of going quietly into the night. Having won the previous three Spanish rounds, he was the clear favourite to take victory in Valencia.

The polesitter was joined on the front row by KTM Tech3’s Deniz Öncü and Aspar teammate Sergio Garcia, who was battling Dennis Foggia and Ayumu Sasaki for second place in the championship.

As the race began, Guevara led the field down to turn one, immediately trying to breakaway from the swarm of bikes behind him. The Spaniard quickly settled into rhythm with the KTM of Öncü in tow.

The leading pair were evenly matched for pace in the opening laps and Öncü seemed content to tuck in behind Guevara as they pulled away from Garcia in third.

Italian rider Riccardo Rossi ended his season early on lap nine, crashing out at turn six.

With the leading duo two seconds clear of Garcia on lap 10, Öncü appeared to be distracted by something on the bike. He pulled what looked like tape off and discarded it, adding some intrigue to what was an uncharacteristically dull Moto3 race.

On lap 14, turn six claimed another victim as Visiontrack Racing’s Scott Ogden crashed out. A lap later, the Brit was joined by Taiyo Furusato who fell at the same corner. Three laps passed before turn six saw its fourth and final rider fall, as Xavi Artigas lost the front of his CFMOTO machine.

With the race heading towards its conclusion, Foggia lunged from sixth to fourth, passing Sasaki to seal third in the championship standings.

Meanwhile at the front, it was a last-lap showdown between Guevara and Öncü. The Turkish rider showed his hand on turn eight with a stunning move to take the lead for the first time in the race. However the Champion showed his class and composure with a measured pass at the final corner to re-establish his lead and take his seventh win of the 2022 season.

Öncü was second, agonisingly close to his first win in Moto3. Interestingly he managed to finish every race this season, and was the only rider in the class to do so. Garcia came home in third to seal a historic 1-2 in the Championship for Team Aspar.

Foggia held onto fourth to take third in the world standings and Brazilian rider Diogo Moreira was named Rookie of the Year.

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Valencian Moto3 Grand Prix Preview

deniz oncu crew on two

The final curtain is about to fall on the 2023 season as Moto3 returns to Europe for one last dance.

A bumper crowd is expected at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo for the season finale this weekend (4/5/6 November).

With the championship already decided, you could be forgiven for expecting the Valencian Grand Prix to be somewhat uneventful, but there’s still plenty of motivation for the riders.

Izan Guevara heads to Valencia having secured both the riders title and a promotion to Moto2. He will be joined in the intermediate class by teammate Sergio Garcia and Leopard Honda’s Dennis Foggia. All three riders would love to add one last Moto3 victory to their illustrious CVs.

It’s the final race in the class for the surprise winner in Malaysia, John McPhee. The Scotsman stunned everyone with a brilliant move to grab the lead on the last lap in Sepang to secure a career-defining victory.

At 28 years of Age, McPhee is too old to compete in Moto3 beyond this season. Unlike many of his peers who have secured their Grand Prix futures, the Max Racing rider is yet to confirm his seat for 2023, at least publicly.

With McPhee moving on, Britain’s hopes will be pinned on the Visiontrack Racing duo of Scott Ogden and Josh Whatley. Both riders have had their share of adversity this season, but the experience will be invaluable for their fledgling careers.

Interestingly only one rider has finished every race so far this season, Red Bull KTM Tech3’s Deniz Öncü. The Turk has shown good pace all year but is still searching for his first win in Moto3. To finish all 20 races would be an impressive feat, so it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on the 19-year-old.

Another rider who has been impressive this year is Japan’s Ayumu Sasaki. His stunning victory in Austria was a real highlight and he has been one of the only riders able to keep up with the pace of Guevara, particularly in the second half of the season.

Whatever happens, the final chapter of the 2022 campaign promises to be a cracker. The forecast for the weekend looks good with clear skies and temperatures expected to be in the mid-20s. The race is scheduled to start at 11:00am local time (10:00am GMT).

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McPhee Wins a Classic in Malaysia

mcphee and sasaki moto3 malaysian grand prix

John McPhee battled his way through the field from 22nd on the grid to take a well deserved win in his penultimate race in Moto3.

It was a difficult weekend for the Scotsman who admitted that after a disappointing result in qualifying, he felt like giving up there and then.

It’s been a brutal season for the 28-year-old who broke his back in a training session before round two in Indonesia, an injury that could have ended his career.

As the lights went out, polesitter Dennis Foggia got bogged down on the damp side of the track, allowing Izan Guevara to lead the field into turn one. The newly crowned champion was unable to break away and was engulfed by a swarm of riders before the end of the first lap.

On lap two Angeluss MTA rider Stefano Nepa suffered a nasty highside at turn nine. Fortunately everyone managed to avoid the Italian who was helped off the track by the marshals.

With the championship decided, all eyes were on the battle for second. Sergio Garcia bolstered his claim by battling with David Muñoz, Jaume Masia, Diogo Moreira and the aforementioned Foggia for the lead.

Muñoz crashed out on lap four, just behind him Tatsuki Suzuki also fell, but was able to continue. The fastest man on track was Max Racing’s Ayumu Sasaki, who was reeling in the lead group lap by lap.

It was scrappy at the front with several riders exchanging positions, allowing Sasaki to join the party. The Japanese rider made short work of his rivals and was soon behind Guevara at the front of the field.

The drama continued at the start of lap 13 as Riccardo Rossi fell at turn one. Further back Carlos Tatay pulled into the garage, ending his day early. Sasaki made his move for the lead at turn 15, sliding underneath Guevara but a poor exit from the corner caused the Spaniard to shunt the back of his bike. It was a scary moment, but fortunately both riders stayed upright.

The constant battling at the front allowed McPhee to latch onto the lead group and it wasn’t long before he was in a tussle with teammate Sasaki. With just a few laps remaining Garcia led from Masia, Foggia, Sasaki, McPhee and Moreira.

Taiyo Furusato crashed at the start of lap 16 as Foggia moved up to second, hot on Garcia’s tail. With just one lap remaining, victory was there for the taking.

Foggia took the lead at turn 10 but it only lasted for a matter of seconds before Masia muscled his way to the front. Moments later McPhee capitalised on the melee and snatched the top spot.

There were desperate lunges into the final corner, but the Scot held his nerve and the lead to take his fourth win in Moto3, in what is expected to be his penultimate Grand Prix. Sasaki was second to secure a 1-2 for Max Racing with Garcia in third.

The results mean Garcia retains second place in the standings with 241 points, Foggia stays in third with 233 and Sasaki is just behind in fourth with 227. Only one round remains in the 2022 season, the Grand Prix of Valencia in a fortnights’ time.

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Malaysian Moto3 Grand Prix Preview

Izan Guevara Australian GP Moto3

Moto3 has a new world champion, but there’s still plenty of excitement building as the series returns to Malaysia for the first time since 2019.

The Sepang International Circuit hosts round 19 of the 2022 Moto3 World Championship this weekend (21/22/23 October).

The popular 5.543 km circuit has just about everything. Fast sweeping bends, tight technical sections and two mammoth straights held together by the famous hairpin combine to form an excellent racetrack.

As with most of the recent Moto3 venues, it’s been a while since the last Grand Prix at Sepang, and only a handful of the current riders have competed at the circuit.

After confidently securing the Moto3 title in Australia, Izan Guevara is clearly a favourite for the win this weekend. The GASGAS Team Aspar rider has simply been a class above this season, particularly since the summer break. With two victories in the last three races, both at tracks he hadn’t visited before, it’s hard to bet against the Spaniard being on the podium on Sunday.

Max Racing’s Ayumu Sasaki has been one of the few challengers anywhere near Guevara’s pace in recent times. The Japanese rider has established himself as one of the top competitors in Moto3 this season. It was confirmed recently that he will retain his seat for next season as part of his team’s merger with Moto2’s Intact GP.

Italian rider Dennis Foggia has blown both hot and cold this season. One week he’s on the podium, the next he couldn’t be much further from it. The Leopard Honda rider is moving up to the intermediate class next year and will be determined to add to his Moto3 win tally before he does so.

Britain’s John McPhee is also leaving the class at the end of the season. At the grand old age of 28, he is no-longer eligible for a permanent ride in Moto3. With his future still unconfirmed, at least to the public, it is expected that his Grand Prix career is coming to an end, at least for now. If that is the case, he will want to go out on a high.

The weather forecast for the weekend looks bleak with thunderstorms expected throughout the event. That said, the eagle-eyed readers will be aware that I’ve touted rain for the last few races and it hasn’t materialised, so take my weather warning with a pinch of salt.

Viewers in the UK will have to set their alarm clocks once again. The race is scheduled to start at 12:00pm local time (05:00am GMT).

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Foggia wins in Thailand with faultless performance

Dennis Foggia took a dominant win on the Thai GP making it his third in the past six races, leaving a glimmer of hope that his fight for the championship is still on.

While his championship rivals struggled in qualifying, with Izan Guevara 11th and Sergio Garcia further down in 20th, Foggia lined up on Sunday’s grid with clear track ahead on pole position.

The start couldn’t have gone any better for the Italian, holding his lead and having a clean getaway as Stefano Nepa moved his way up to second after a good start from fourth.

Meanwhile there was drama almost straight away as the first lap came to a close, when championship contender Garcia found himself on the ground after a collision with Adrian Fernandez.

There was a couple of other crashes as the race unfolded, Kaito Toba and John McPhee fell down in separate incidents which brought both of their races to an early close.

Back at the front it was still Foggia out in first as a group of six riders formed in the lead pack. This number slowly began to fall as Jaume Masia, Diogo Moreira and David Muñoz dropped back down the field.

Garcia’s day continued to get worse as he went a lap down at the beginning of lap 12, there was nothing he could do as he let rival Foggia by when the blue flags waved.

Garcia eventually retired to the pits shortly after the halfway point in the race, with the opportunity to score any points well and truly gone.

Credit: Gold & Goose/Red Bull Content Pool

There was little standing in Foggia’s way as the race went on, leading quite comfortably throughout the entire race bar one slight mistake at the end of lap 13 which allowed Ayumu Sasaki into the lead, albeit very briefly as the Italian quickly moved back ahead two corners later.

With a few laps to go and with Foggia pulling away, Sasaki and Riccardo Rossi battled it out for second place which went on right until the final corner on the last lap as Rossi made a last effort move up the inside on his Japanese rival, but had to settle for third after running wide.

But out front there was no stopping Foggia, his win putting on stamp on what was a strong performance at Buriram, winning the race by over 1.5s from second placed Sasaki.

A tense fight for fourth place ended with Nepa taking the position at the line, ahead of championship leader Guevara who took a good haul of points despite a tough weekend.

Three rounds remain and there’s 49 points separating the top two in the championship, but anything can happen as Moto3 heads to Australia in less than two weeks’ time.

Image credit: Gold & Goose/Red Bull Content Pool

Thai Moto3 Grand Prix Preview

ayumu sasaki thai moto3 preview

After securing his fifth win of the season in Japan, Izan Guevara has one hand on the Moto3 title, but with four rounds left and 100 points up for grabs, anything can happen.

The Chang International Circuit in Buriram, Thailand hosts round 17 of the 2022 Moto3 championship this weekend (30 September – 2 October).

Like the previous round at Motegi, the Thai Grand Prix will be unknown territory for most of the Moto3 field, including championship leader Guevara. The GASGAS Aspar rider showed unstoppable pace last Sunday, extending his lead in the standings to 45 points.

Despite another dominant win, it wasn’t all plain sailing for the Spaniard. A mediocre qualifying session in the wet followed a huge collision with John McPhee during the pre-race warm-up almost derailing his weekend. With adverse conditions anticipated in Thailand, it could be the trickiest event of the year.

The weather didn’t seem to faze British rookie Scott Ogden in Japan. The Visiontrack GP rider stunned the paddock with a sensational qualifying performance, earning him a spot on the front row of the grid. The 18-year-old heads to Buriram with no real expectations on his shoulders, and could spring a few more surprises if the rain falls as expected.

Ogden’s teammate, Josh Whatley will be hoping for better fortunes in Thailand. He has been taken out by other riders on the first lap in each of the last two races, and will be determined to go the full distance on Sunday.

With the season reaching it’s climax, Sergio Garcia is realistically the only challenger to Guevara’s title claim. The 19-year-old looked somewhat dejected after a spirited fourth place finish at Motegi. He struggled to keep up with the early pace at the front and was soon embroiled in a battle with the chasing pack. The young Spaniard has insisted that there is less pressure on him after losing the championship lead, but he’s still hungry to take the Moto3 crown.

Italian rider Dennis Foggia will be dreading the prospect of a wet weekend. He trails Guevara by 63 points and his record in the rain doesn’t bode well for his already slim title hopes. The Leopard Honda man did well to finish on the podium in Japan, and will have to do the same again in Thailand if he is to keep his championship dream alive.

One of the most in-form riders, at least in terms of pace, is Max Racing’s Ayumu Sasaki. The Japanese rider has had three podiums in the last four events and has raced in Thailand before. As is often the case, he is definitely one to watch this weekend.

To say the current weather forecast looks bleak would be a huge understatement. Thunderstorms are predicted for the entire event in Buriram for what will undoubtably be a very tricky race for the entire paddock. The race is scheduled to start at 12:00pm local time (06:00am GMT).

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Guevara Secures Fifth Win of the Season

Izan Guevara Japanese GP

Izan Guevara made it back to back wins in Moto3, extending his championship lead to 45 points over teammate Sergio Garcia.

It was a rocky start to the weekend for Guevara as the conditions in Japan proved tricky. The Spaniard had never raced at Motegi and a huge crash during Sunday’s warmup had the Aspar mechanics working hard to repair his bike in time for the race.

Guevara lined up on row three after a mediocre qualifying session by his standards. Japanese rider Tatsuki Suzuki had secured pole position, he was joined on the front row by Visiontrack’s Scott Ogden and Garcia.

As the lights went out, Garcia got a great launch and immediately started challenging for the lead as chaos ensued behind him. Australian rider Joel Kelso had a big crash at turn nine collecting Josh Whatley in the process, before Carlos Tatay and Kaito Toba fell at the following corner.

Izan Guevara leading the pack at Moto3 Japan 2022. Image courtesy of GASGAS Motorcycles/Polarity Photo

It was an incredible start from Guevara who made short work of his peers, taking the lead at the beginning of lap two. Ayumu Sasaki and Dennis Foggia latched onto the back of the Spaniard, who immediately set about breaking away from the rest of the pack.

Sasaki and Guevara exchanged the lead back and forth while the riders behind struggled to stay upright. Kanta Hamada, Dani Holgado, Suzuki and Adrian Fernandez all fell from their bikes. Ogden was fighting in the points places before running wide at turn 9, dropping to the back of the field.

By lap eight the leading trio were joined by Jaume Masia who was the fastest man on track. Garcia meanwhile was beginning to lose ground on the leaders and was swallowed up by a second group, consisting of Diogo Moreira, John McPhee and David Muñoz.

With the leaders effectively riding in formation, a fierce battle was underway in the chasing group. Garcia jostled for position with Moreira, McPhee and Muñoz, while his championship rivals pulled away.

On lap 17 the situation at the front intensified. Masia moved up to second place, Foggia followed him past Sasaki who dropped to fourth as Guevara tried to make a break from the group. Masia, desperate to stay within striking distance of the leader, had a huge highside between turns 12 and 13.

With Masia out, Guevara was infallible in the closing laps. The Spaniard took the chequered flag for the fifth time this season and now has a firm grip on the Moto3 title. Foggia crossed the line in second, and Sasaki became the first Japanese rider with a home podium since 2009.

Garcia managed to salvage fourth place but with just four races left this season, it will take something special for him to win the championship.

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Japanese Moto3 Grand Prix Preview

Ayumu Sasaki Japanese GP

Round 15 at Aragón had huge ramifications for the Moto3 title race. Now it’s Japan’s turn to offer more twists to the championship tale.

The wonderful Mobility Resort Motegi hosts round 16 of the 2022 season this weekend (24/25/26 September). It’s the first time MotoGP has been back to Japan since 2019, and marks the start of four flyaways in the next five weeks.

A lot has changed since the last visit to Motegi, most of the current Moto3 riders have never raced there, including championship leader Izan Guevara. After a sensational weekend in Aragón, the Spaniard has a 33 point advantage over his closest challenger, teammate Sergio Garcia.

Whilst Guevara’s lead looks insurmountable, Garcia does have a slight advantage having raced at Motegi in 2019, where he finished 5th. He wasn’t the only current Moto3 rider to finish that race in the top 10. Tatsuki Suzuki, John McPhee, Jaume Masia, and Andrea Migno also had strong finishes.

The 2019 event was a race to forget for Dennis Foggia. The Italian finished 23rd, almost 33 seconds behind the leader. He does still have a chance to take the Moto3 crown, albeit a slim one. Having shown flashes of excellence this season, the inconsistency of old has resurfaced, and the gap to Guevara now stands at 58 points with just five races remaining.

A rider desperate to impress his home crowd will be Max Racing’s Ayumu Sasaki. The 21-year-old has shown fantastic pace this season, and has established himself as one of the frontrunners in Moto3. Whilst it’s extremely unlikely he’ll win the championship at this stage, he is certainly worth keeping an eye on for the rest of the season.

Eighteen year-old Kanta Hamada is set to make his Grand Prix debut, replacing the the injured Alberto Surra for the Rivacold Snipers Team. The Japanese rider has previously competed in the Asia Talent Cup, and should be familiar with the circuit at Motegi.

There were doubts about whether or not the race would take place last week as Japan was hit by Typhoon Nanmadol. Millions were told to evacuate, but fortunately the storm has dissipated, and the Island has begun the recovery process.

Rain is forecast for the entire weekend, adding intrigue to what should be an exciting event. Fans in the UK will need to have their alarm clocks primed as the race is scheduled to start at 12:00pm local time (04:00am GMT).

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Guevara Reigns Supreme in Aragón

izan guevara aragon moto3

A dominant ride from Izan Guevara saw the Spaniard extend his championship lead to 33 points while his title rivals struggled at MotorLand Aragón.

Guevara was confident going into the weekend after taking the championship lead from his Aspar teammate Sergio Garcia in the last round at Misano. After wowing the paddock with an acrobatic handstand before securing a comfortable pole position on Saturday, the 18-year-old never looked back en route to his 4th win of the season.

Izan was joined on the front row by Ayumu Sasaki and Dani Holgado. The trio enjoyed good launches and immediately set about pulling away from the rest of the field. British youngster Josh Whatley was taken out at turn 1 in an incident involving Nicola Carraro and Lorenzo Fellon.

Following a disappointing qualifying session, Garcia was desperate to make up places from the 4th row on the grid. It was confirmed yesterday that the Spanish rider would be competing in Moto2 next season with Pons Racing, but he found himself caught in a scrap in the middle of the pack while the leaders pulled away.

After managing to get his championship challenge back on track with a win in Misano, Dennis Foggia struggled from the start at Aragón. The Leopard Honda rider couldn’t seem to find the pace he needed to challenge his rivals and quickly found himself outside the top 10.

The leading trio were in a different league to the rest, increasing the gap behind them by roughly half a second each lap. Deniz Öncü muscled his way up to 4th but despite his best efforts was unable to bridge the gap to the front group.

While the leaders pulled away, it was a typical Moto3 battle for the rest of the field. Sixteen year old rookie David Muñoz practically ran through KTM rider Adrian Fernandez, earning a long-lap penalty for his troubles.

With 3 laps to go Holgado began to drop off from the leading pair as the pace simply became too much for the young Spaniard. Sasaki was the only rider able to stick with the leader who was simply unassailable.

The result was never in question, as Guevara secured his fifth win in Moto3 and probably his best. Sasaki was an admiral runner-up and Holgado secured his first Grand Prix podium. It was a race to forget for Garcia and Foggia who finished in 13th and 14 respectively.

With his rivals struggling, Guevara’s 33 point championship lead makes him the clear favourite for the Moto3 crown, but with 5 rounds remaining, anything can happen.

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Aragon GP Moto3 Preview

motorland aragon preview

The Misano Maestro reigned supreme in San Marino, but who will be crowned the King of Spain? 

The spectacular MotorLand Aragón circuit, located in Alcañiz, Spain, will host the MotoGP circus for round 15 of the 2022 season this weekend (16/17/18 September).

All eyes will be on the Spanish duo of Izan Guevara and Sergio Garcia. The GASGAS Aspar riders have had some epic battles on track this season and with rumours of a promotion to Moto2 for whoever comes out on top, neither rider needs any more motivation.

Guevara heads to Aragón as the championship leader for the first time this season, having occupied second place in the standings for much of the 2022 campaign. He has capitalised on the misfortune of his title rivals in recent weeks, and is one of the most consistent riders on the grid this year.

On the contrary, Garcia has struggled since returning from the summer break. He was taken out at Silverstone by an over-eager Ayumu Sasaki, and was black-flagged from the Misano GP after a disastrous start to the race. The 19-year-old will be hoping to bounce back and restore his championship lead this weekend.

Elsewhere Dennis Foggia has enjoyed a return to form and is mounting a late charge to take the Moto3 crown. With 2 wins in the last 3 races, the Italian has found his feet after a disappointing start to the season. He’s now just 35 points behind Guevara in the standings. Himself and Leopard Honda teammate Tatsuki Suzuki have shown great pace since the summer break.

British fans will be pleased to learn that VisionTrack Racing Team youngsters Scott Ogden and Josh Whatley have solid records at MotorLand Aragón. Ogden has numerous point finishes in JuniorGP and the Red Bull Rookies Cup whilst Whatley had his best finish in the European Talent Cup at the circuit.

In a historic first for MotoGP, Angeluss MTA racing are entering an all-female team this weekend. María Herrera returns to the class as a wildcard entry and will be backed by a crew of exclusively female mechanics. The project aims to increase the presence of women in motorcycle racing.

The weather forecast for the weekend looks great. Warm temperatures are expected with clear skies on Friday and Saturday and some cloud cover anticipated on Sunday. The race is due to start at 11:00am local time (10:00am GMT).

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