With only three points separating the top three Moto2™ riders, the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya promises to be yet another nail-bighting affair in the quest for intermediate-class supremacy.
With 71 points so far, Pons 40 HP Tuenti rider Pol Espargaró currently leads the championship by one point over Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol’s championship favourite Marc Márquez, who has now recovered from a thumb injury sustained in his crash in Le Mans. Espargaró has been on the podium twice at the Catalan circuit in the 125cc class, while Márquez took a win on a 125cc bike and was runner up in Moto2 last year. Trying to upset the Spanish one-two on their home ground will be Interwetten-Paddock’s Tom Lüthi, no doubt brimming with confidence off the back of his dominant wet-weather performance in France, where he took his first victory of the season.
Speed Master’s Andrea Iannone will aim to edge closer to the top three after putting in a solid performance last time out. The Italian, who is renowned for being stronger on race day than in qualifying, will take heart from the fact that he qualified in pole position at the Catalan circuit in the 2010 Moto2 season. Closely on his heels, Marc VDS Racing’s Scott Redding, who recorded his first podium in 22 races at Le Mans, will undoubtedly be looking for a repeat this weekend, though his teammate Mika Kallio will also be pushing to get back towards the front once again.
Italtrans Racing Team’s Claudio Corti, who managed his first podium ever at Le Mans, is in a buoyant mood and looking to continue his momentum, while JiR Moto2’s charging rookie Johann Zarco will look to make amends for his crash at his home round. Having grabbed the headlines for reasons other than racing, Blusens Avintia’s Julián Simón will not only hope to put memories of his bad crash at Catalunya last year out of his mind, but also that he won’t have to push his bike across the line to finish.
There will be one change to the usual Moto2 line-up, as Catalan rider Jordi Torres replaces the injured Xavier Siméon in the Tech 3 Racing team.
World Championship Standings Moto2™
1- Pol Espargaró - SPA- Kalex - 71
2- Marc Márquez - SPA - Suter - 70
3- Thomas Luthi - SWI - Suter - 68
4- Andrea Iannone - ITA - Speed Up - 46
5- Scott Redding - GBR - Kalex - 44