The Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto beckons. Who’s going to come out swinging in the lightweight class?
If there’s one thing we can probably say for sure ahead of the Gran Premio Red Bull de España, it’s that the Moto3™ class will be far from rusty. Always walking the line between madness and genius, the lightweight class know how to put on a show and that will be no different as we get back on track – finally – for Round 2. From the floodlights of Losail we head to the baking summer of southern Spain, and as luck, or skill, would have it, it’s a Spaniard who arrives at the top of the pile.
Albert Arenas (Gaviota Aspar Team Moto3) is most definitely a veteran now, and his ride in Qatar stamped some early authority on the title fight as he took his third win in style. On home turf he’ll be keen to keep his advantage, but the cast of home heroes is a big one to contend with – from the more experienced likes of Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing) to the younger guns like Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) and Jeremy Alcoba (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3), all of whom will be fired up.
In terms of the Championship though, Arenas likely already has an eye on the man he beat to the top step in Qatar – John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing). And McPhee likely likewise. The Brit is another veteran who knows how to win and will be aiming for the top – but will also, like Arenas, know consistency is king. Especially in a season that already looks so different…
So who else could they be fighting? As it’s Moto3™, probably most of the field. But based on Qatar – and previous form – Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) should be one to watch. The Japanese rider gained traction in a big way throughout much of 2019 and began his sophomore season on the rostrum. Veterans and SIC58 Squadra Corse teammates Tatsuki Suzuki and Niccolo Antonelli will also be aiming high – and Antonelli’s emotional win at the venue last year was a stunner. Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3), meanwhile, will want in, and the Rivacold Snipers Team of Filip Salac – who shone in Qatar – and Tony Arbolino – expected to challenge for the crown – can’t be overlooked. Rookie Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) also impressed in Qatar, so there’s no shortage of names likely to be fighting it out in the freight train.
There really is nothing in the world like Moto3™, so make sure you tune in for the test on Wednesday and the race weekend proper, from the 17th to the 19th of July at Jerez.
Moto3™ Championship Standings
1 Albert Arenas – Gaviota Aspar Team Moto3 – KTM – 25
2 John McPhee – Petronas Sprinta Racing – Honda – 20
3 Ai Ogura – Honda Team Asia – Honda – 16
4 Jaume Masia – Leopard Racing – Honda – 13
5 Tatsuki Suzuki – SIC58 Squadra Corse – Honda – 11