First points for Rabat with fourth place in Austin
Austin, Texas – 12 April 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider, Tito Rabat, finally got his title defence underway in Austin, with fourth place in today’s Moto2 race giving the reigning champion his first points of the season.
Alex Marquez added to his points tally again in today’s Grand Prix of the Americas, overcoming the set up issues that had plagued him throughout practice and qualifying to pick up the final point on offer in 15th position.
Both Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS riders made a good start to today’s 19-lap race, with Rabat leading away from the line after starting from the front row of the grid. The 25-year-old Spaniard chased hard when eventual podium finishers Sam Lowes, Johann Zarco and Alex Rins forced their way through, but eventually backed off to finish a safe fourth as his rear tyre dropped off shortly after mid race distance.
Starting from 23rd position on the grid, Moto2 rookie Marquez managed to fight his way through the field and up to 12th, but dropped back to finish 15th after making a couple of small errors at the halfway point in the race.
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS will now head straight to Argentina, where round three of the 2015 Moto2 World Championship will take place at Termas de Río Hondo next weekend.
Tito Rabat: 4th
“I made a good start and I tried to follow when Zarco and Lowes started to pull a gap, but when it started to rain the bike was sliding a lot and I had to back off a little. After that I tried to push to close the gap, but it wasn’t possible to go any faster as rear grip dropped off quite a lot, maybe because of the spinning. I pushed as hard as I could, but I also wanted to finish the race and pick up my first points of the season after missing out in Qatar. This weekend we made another step forward and we need to focus on making a further step in Argentina next week.”
Alex Marquez: 15th
“It’s been a difficult weekend for me, because we didn’t really find a good direction with the set up of the bike in the dry. A big thank you to the team for making improvements to the bike in every session, but we need to take what we learnt in the race today and apply it in Argentina, so that we can make another step forward with the bike. The race was not so bad in the beginning, but I made a couple of mistakes at midrace distance and lost a few places. Given the difficulties we’ve faced this weekend, to finish the race and gain more experience on the bike is a positive, but now we need to look to improve further in the next race in Argentina”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“Tito rode an intelligent race to claim his first points of the season today. It would have been very easy for him to have pushed that little bit too hard to catch Zarco and Lowes, increasing the risk of a crash, but he played it safe and brought the bike home in a safe fourth to get his first points on the board. Alex has endured a difficult weekend. In the wet he was fast, but in the dry it was obvious he was lacking confidence in the bike, which is incredibly frustrating for a rider. However, he also rode a good race today, picking up another point and gaining a lot more experience in the process. Now we move on to Argentina, where I’m confident we’ll see both riders make another significant step forward. I’d also like to say congratulations to Fabio Quartararo, who secured Estrella Galicia’s first Moto3 podium of the season with 2nd place in Austin today.”