David Salvador by 15 seconds over Mario Aji and Billy van Eerde. But only after 3 of the leading, incredibly intense, quartet crashed out when David Alonso moved onto a damp patch to avoid Salvador’s rear wheel, highsided and both Pedro Acosta and Daniel Holgado went down with him.
The drying track held a good number of damp patches through the 15 laps and they were not the only fallers in the most desperately difficult conditions.
None of the top three in the championship chase finished and Salvador’s victory propelled the 16-year-old Spaniard into 4th place in the title chase but he is still 77 short of Acosta with 75 on offer from the remaining 3 races.
Colombian 14-year-old Alonso is still 2nd, 52 behind 16-year-old Spaniard Acosta. Third is Spanish 16-year-old Iván Ortolá 10 points adrift of Alonso after also sliding off in Race 1.
Salvador kept it all together to win
“It’s amazing to finally get this win this year. On the podium is where I believe I should be, it has been a frustrating season but finally it has happened.”
“It was a very difficult race because the track conditions are so tricky but my feeling with the bike is very good and I enjoyed the race so much. Of course the other guys were fast but I was happy to race them all the way, I am glad that no one is hurt and we can have another race tomorrow.”
“I am so happy that after last week here where I had a big crash at the last corner I can get the good feeling back and have this result. On the bike I just focused completely and forgot all about that.”
Aji takes a huge step to 2nd
“It was quite tricky conditions,” explains the 16-year-old Indonesian who turned his best every Cup Qualifying, P4, into a great result. “I made a good start but into Turn 1 I was so scared and slow. But then, lap by lap I was getting better. Many riders crashed and made mistakes, I also made mistakes but I managed to calm myself down and control things to the end.”
“I got my first podium and it has really given me more confidence and tomorrow I want to make another podium.”
Van Eerde ends a run of bad luck with 3rd
“I am so happy to get back on the podium,” enthused the 18-year-old Australian quietly. “It has been such a difficult year with injuries and it’s great to be back. By the end of the race my lap times were not so different to the guys at the front and it has given me a lot of confidence so I am really looking forward to the last 3 races starting with tomorrow.”
Acosta accusing no one
“I’m happy because I am fine after the crash and I was going well in the race. After this you can’t criticise the other rider because certainly he is the first one who didn’t want to crash. That’s racing.”
“I am happy because this race didn’t change the situation in the championship. Thinking about the race tomorrow I now have to consider the championship points and not just the race.”
Alonso very positive
“I crashed in turn 12, I was quicker than David (Salvador) through turn 11 and so I didn’t touch him I moved to the left and went onto the wet paint, the sun was going down and I didn’t see it at all.”
“Apart from the crash I was very happy about the race, it was the best race I have done. I was 13th on the grid, made a perfect start and could pass people and get with the leaders quickly. I improved a lot on this track and also was as aggressive as I needed to be, I think we did a step forward and we are ready for tomorrow.”
This weekend’s Rookies Cup races can be seen live on www.redbull.tv and on TV stations around the world.
Race 2 is on Sunday at 15:30 CET, the show starts 10 minutes before the race.