Fantastic Fourth for Mika Kallio at Indianapolis
The Marc VDS Racing Team enjoyed a successful visit to the world famous Brickyard, with Mika Kallio taking a hard fought fourth and Scott Redding a creditable sixth place in today's Indianapolis Moto2 Grand Prix.
Kallio was quick off the line from the third row of the grid, making up places on the run down to the first turn and latching onto the back of the leading group. The 29-year-old Finn made up more places in the opening laps, but then got held up for three laps by Andrea Iannone, who was dropping back through the field with tyre problems.
By the time Kallio managed to force his way through on the Italian, the leading group of three riders had already pulled an unassailable two second gap at the front of the race, leaving the Marc VDS rider to hold off a determined challenge from Thomas Lüthi for the remainder of the race, before taking the chequered flag ahead of the Swiss rider in fourth place.
Redding hit problems on the opening lap, running into the back of Julian Simon and the former 125cc World Champion braked early to avoid another rider in front of him. The 19-year-old Briton then hit a false neutral coming onto the main straight at the end of the opening lap and lost contact with the leading group as a result.
The Marc VDS rider continued to push hard, but was losing ground on the two straights on the Indianapolis circuit and having to take chances on the brakes into turn one. Once clear of the group battling for seventh place, Redding quickly closed onto the battle for fourth place, which was being waged by teammate Kallio and Lüthi. Unfortunately Redding ran out of laps before he could mount a challenge on the Swiss rider and had to settle for sixth place at the chequered flag.
The Marc VDS Racing Team will be back in action in just five days time, in the Czech Republic Grand Prix, the 11th round of the Moto2 World Championship, at the Brno circuit.
Mika Kallio #36: 4th Position
“I got a good start and managed to make up places on the opening lap, but a lot of riders were trying to conserve tyres and the lap times were quite slow. But then Marquez started to pull away at the front of the race and I knew I had to go, but I struggled to get past Iannone and by the time I did eventually squeeze through, the leading group had gone. I pushed to try and catch them at first, but there was no way I could bridge a two-second gap, so focussed instead of securing fourth position. It was a good race and I had some good battles, especially with Lüthi right at the end. I'm happy enough with fourth, but also a little disappointed. If I hadn't got stuck behind Iannone for so long, losing contact with the leaders, then I know I had the pace to challenge Espargaro and Simon for the podium.”
Scott Redding #45: 6th Position
“I knew I had to go with the leading group of riders if I was to be in with a shot of the podium, but the opening lap put paid to that plan. Firstly I hit the back of Simon into turn three when everyone braked early and then I missed a gear at the start of the main straight. I lost time in both incidents and by that time the leading trio had gone. I was involved in a big group for most of the race and, although I was faster, it was almost impossible to get past them. I was losing so much ground on the straight the only way to pass was to go underneath them from miles back into turn one. It was a bit risky, but it eventually worked. Once clear I managed to catch Lüthi and Mika, but ran out of laps before I could line them up for a pass. Other than missing out on the podium I'm pretty happy with my race, but I'll be looking for more next weekend in Brno.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“We came here looking for podium finishes, but we missed out on that in the first five laps because Mika and Scott weren't able to go with the leading group from the start. Both riders pushed hard throughout the race, working their way through the field to finish inside the top six, so I'm happy with their performance today. The results here mean that Scott and Mika maintain their positions in the championship standings and we can continue to try and close the gap to the leaders next weekend in Brno.”