THE ABSOLUTE FIFTH TIME IN THE RACE CONFIRMS THE VALUE OF ALEIX AND HIS APRILIA
When all was said and done, with the race severely compromised, Aleix Espargaró and his Aprilia scratched the itch of wanting to be the fastest on the track – even faster than the riders battling for the win. But the time of 1'47.885, achieved nine laps from the end, fifth best absolute lap of the race, remains solely as consolation, albeit not insignificant, in a race that was over for Aleix when the red light went off. In fact, at the start his RS-GP made a clear move early that did not have any impact on his performance, but it was enough to expose Aleix to the risk of a penalty which then arrived, forcing the Spaniard to do a ride through and consequently relegating him far from the group and extremely far from the battle for a top ten spot where he had been before.
Back on the track - and before stopping due to running long onto the gravel - Aleix demonstrated that excellent race pace that had fed the hopes of the entire Aprilia Racing Team Gresini throughout the weekend that he might bring home those results that are clearly within his potential. It is not enough to save the weekend, but it is a good start for the next MotoGP race which will be on the Spanish Montmelò circuit next Sunday.
Sam Lowes finished nineteenth. After a good start where he got close to the centre group, Sam had to reckon with a faltering feeling with the front that slowed him.