Dennis Foggia celebrated his promotion to Moto2 in style with a confident win at the San Marino Grand Prix, retaining his crown as the King of Misano.
Buoyed by the announcement that he will be moving up to the intermediate class with Italtrans next season, the Leopard Honda rider carved his way through the field from the third row of the grid and never looked back.
It was a typically eventful start to the race, with Deniz Öncü getting a great launch from pole position. Izan Guevara was hot on the leaders tail with a flying start from row 2, but it didn’t take long for the drama to unfold.
After a dominant win in the previous race at the Red Bull Ring in Austria, Japanese rider Ayumu Sasaki was clattered from behind by Nicola Carraro, effectively ending his already slim chance of a title challenge. Elsewhere championship leader Sergio Garcia was forced wide causing him to lose ground on the leaders.
Guevara cemented his good start by snatching the lead from Öncü on lap 2, and quickly set about establishing a gap between himself and the rest of the field.
Desperate to recover from his lap 1 incident, Garcia was the fastest man on track before a 4th lap tangle with Öncü forced him to run wide again, losing more ground in the process. The nightmare continued for the Aspar man, who crashed at turn 4 on the following lap. He was able to continue, but any hope of a points finish was gone.
At the front of the race, Guevara’s lead was diminishing with Foggia, Dani Holgado and Jaume Masiá closing the gap behind him. After reeling in the Spaniard, Foggia made his move to take the lead on lap 10.
After a visit to the pits, Garcia was a lap down, yet continued to battle with the riders in midfield. After slowing down Britain’s John McPhee, the GASGAS rider was shown the black flag, ending a miserable day.
With his teammate out of the race, Guevara had a great chance to boost his title hopes. On lap 17 he briefly took the lead, but Foggia struck back allowing Masiá to snatch 2nd place from the new championship leader.
As the race neared it’s conclusion, Guevara made numerous attempts to take the lead but was unable to get the better of Foggia. He was now under pressure from Masiá and Öncü, who had caught leading trio.
On the final lap of the race Öncü lunged from 4th to 2nd, with himself, Masiá and Guevara all exchanging places. Foggia took advantage of the melee behind him, and hit his marks confidently to take his second victory of the season. Masiá finished 2nd with Guevara 3rd.
Foggia becomes the first rider to win three races at the same track in Moto3, and is just 35 points off the championship lead. It was a weekend to forget for Garcia, he is now 11 points behind teammate Guevara, who tops the championship standings with 204 points.
Feature Image: MotoGP