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MotoGP, Grand Prix of Argentina10.04.2017

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Big Boss Morbidelli

By winning a second time in a row in Argentina, Franco Morbidelli has consolidated his leading position in the Moto2 class. The Italian can believe in his chances of taking the world title more than ever.

The Races

Second fastest time in the free practice sessions, Franco Morbidelli once again showed he was unbeatable on the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit. Leading from the first to the last lap, he only had to resist a brief assault from his teammate a few kilometres from the finish.

I pushed a little harder in the last laps when I saw that Alex was getting closer, but when I crossed the finish line, he was no longer behind me.”

Franco Morbidelli

 Marquez fell on the last lap, depriving Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS of an historic twin-win. Although he managed to get back on his bike, the Spaniard only crossed the finish line in twenty-first position. Both riders being determined to score points in MotoGP, Jack Miller and Tito Rabat made their mission possible. The Australian made it to the top ten for the second time this season, finishing in ninth places hot on Redding’s heels while the Spaniard took the lead over a trio of Barbera, Espargaro and Smith to finish twelfth. In Moto3, the two riders of the Peugeot MC Saxoprint team were unfortunately unable to keep up with the leaders. Jakub Kornfeil finished eighteenth, twenty seconds behind the winner, while Patrik Pulkkinen crossed the finish line in twenty-sixth position.

The Championship

With its victory, Morbidelli has consolidated his leadership of the Moto2 World Championship. The Italian is now fourteen points ahead of Tom Lüthi. Marquez is in ninth place with eleven points. In MotoGP, Miller has climbed to seventh position, just five points from the rider in third place, Andrea Dovizioso. Rabat is nineteenth, tying with Jorge Lorenzo. On the other hand, the two Moto3 riders of the Peugeot MC Saxoprint team have yet to score any points.

The Background

Located in the heart of the Santiago del Estero province in north-western Argentina, the little town of Termas de Rio Hondo has hosted the Argentine Grand Prix for the past three years. With a population of 44,000, this town is better known for its spa than for its speed circuit. So why organize a MotoGP Grand Prix in a small town more than a thousand kilometres from Buenos Aires and which requires travelling more than twenty-four hours to get there from a capital in Europe? Not just because Argentina in 1961 was 14the first country outside Europe to host a leg of the World Speed Championships. At the time, the Grand Prix was organized in Buenos Aires. It was held there nine times, the last being in 1999. No, if Termas de Rio Hondo has hosted the Argentine Grand Prix for the last three years, it is because the MotoGP championship is not just a show. It also means a guaranteed inflow of tens of thousands of spectators and worldwide media exposure. During the three days of the Argentine Grand Prix, the province of Santiago del Estero rakes in more than ten percent of its annual revenues from tourism. Which is why the Government supports the site for the race body and soul with a contract which runs until 2019.

10.04.2017