Cluzel wins British Moto2 thriller
|By Matt Beer||Sunday, June 20th 2010, 11:04 GMT|
Jules Cluzel claimed his first victory at grand prix level by triumphing in an epic Moto2 race at Silverstone.
The Frenchman pounced when Thomas Luthi - who looked to have done enough to secure the victory - slid slightly wide into Club on the final lap, then did enough to resist Luthi's retaliation attempts and win by 0.057 seconds.
The early stages of the race had featured an incredible lead battle featuring over a dozen bikes. Polesitter Claudio Corti, the early-charging Fonsi Nieto, Cluzel and Julian Simon did most of the leading as riders regularly went four abreast and swapped places countless times.
As the race neared its end, a five-bike pack broke away, with Corti, Cluzel and Simon joined by Luthi and Scott Redding, who had steadily crept into contention.
Despite having fallen into the midfield on the first lap, Luthi worked his way into the lead with two laps to go, and then got some clear air behind him when Corti fell at Club on the penultimate lap while running second.
That looked to have secured the win for Luthi, until the small error on the last lap that gave Cluzel a chance to edge ahead.
Simon completed the podium, with Redding also within 0.5s of victory as he finished fourth.
Alex Debon fended off Shoya Tomizawa, Mike di Meglio and Xavier Simeon for fifth, while championship leader Toni Elias never featured near the front but clawed his way up to 10th by the end.
Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap 1. Jules Cluzel Suter 39m19.472s 2. Thomas Luthi Moriwaki + 0.057s 3. Julian Simon Suter + 0.322s 4. Scott Redding Suter + 0.520s 5. Alex Debon FTR + 5.271s 6. Shoya Tomizawa Suter + 5.377s 7. Mike di Meglio Suter + 5.484s 8. Xavier Simeon Moriwaki + 5.709s 9. Dominique Agerter Suter + 10.240s 10. Toni Elias Moriwaki + 10.411s 11. Fonsi Nieto Moriwaki + 10.701s 12. Andrea Iannone Speed Up + 10.741s 13. Ratthapark Wilairot Bimota + 10.959s 14. Arne Tode Suter + 16.062s 15. Sergio Gadea Pons Kalex + 16.161s 16. Niccolo Canepa Scot + 24.118s 17. Anthony West MZ + 29.563s 18. Yuki Takahashi Tech 3 + 29.952s 19. Vladimir Ivanov Moriwaki + 30.218s 20. Lukas Pesek Moriwaki + 31.289s 21. Kenny Noyes Promo Harris + 31.423s 22. Kevin Coghlan FTR + 31.715s 23. Axel Pons Pons Kalex + 31.819s 24. Roberto Rolfo Suter + 35.447s 25. Bernat Martinez Bimota + 35.851s 26. Valentin Debise ADV + 42.924s 27. Robertino Pietri Suter + 51.566s 28. Raffaele De Rosa Tech 3 + 56.529s 29. Vladimir Leonov Suter + 58.361s 30. Claudio Corti Suter + 1m18.671s Retirements: Joan Olive Promo Harris 18 laps Yonny Hernandez BQR 17 laps Alex Baldolini ICP 17 laps Karel Abraham FTR 17 laps Hector Faubel Suter 17 laps Mattia Pasini Motobi 16 laps Gabor Talmacsi Speed Up 15 laps Anthony Delhalle BQR 13 laps Simone Corsi Motobi 1 lap Stefan Bradl Suter 1 lap