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Nov 11, 2013

More From The MotoGP Season Finale At Valencia

Mika Kallio (36).
Valencia, Spain: Mika Kallio was left frustrated after a problem with his rear tyre saw him finish 14th in the final race of the season at Valencia today.

Kallio got a good start from 12th on the grid, forcing his way through the field on the opening lap to eventually slot into fifth place. Faster than those riders immediately ahead of him the Marc VDS rider looked all set to challenge for the podium, until the left hand side of his rear tyre started to lose rubber at the halfway point in the race. With points still on offer, the 31-year-old Finn decided to race on, eventually finishing a creditable 14th.

Scott Redding rode through the pain barrier to finish in the points today, on his final appearance for the Marc VDS Racing Team. The one point for 15th place in the final race of 2013 was enough to ensure that the 20-year-old Briton ends the season second in the Moto2 World Championship standings.

While Kallio will join Tito Rabat for two days of testing at Jerez on Thursday and Friday, Redding will bid farewell to the Marc VDS Racing Team after four years, as he makes the move to the premier MotoGP class for the 2014 season. Everyone in the Marc VDS Racing Team wishes Scott all the best for the future.

Livio Loi's debut Grand Prix season ended in the gravel trap today, after the Marc VDS rider was involved in a collision with Francesco Bagnaia. After losing places on the opening lap, Loi had managed to fight his way back through into 21st position by the midpoint of the race, but then Bagnaia took his front wheel out on the entry to turn two and he crashed without injury. The Marc VDS rider was unable to re-join the race.
Loi will be hoping for better luck next weekend, when he returns to Valencia to contest the final CEV Moto3 race of the 2013 season.

Mika Kallio #36 // 14th
"It's frustrating, because it looked like a podium finish was on the cards today. I got a good start and managed to move up to fifth, and my lap times were a little quicker than Jordi Torres who was in front of me. I thought I'd be able to work my way further up the order, but after five laps the rear grip started to drop off and then, two laps later, the whole bike started vibrating. I knew I was losing rubber off the tyre, because the feeling was the same as in Australia, but I decided to push on because it was still possible to finish in the points. Our set-up seems to exacerbate the tyre issue, so that's something we need to focus on during winter and pre-season testing."

Scott Redding #45 // 15th // @Reddingpower
"I decided not to have the painkilling injections ahead of the race, but that meant it was like I was in a war with my own body just to survive out there today. I went off the start and tried to be as aggressive as normal, not letting anyone by, despite a bit of contact early on. But then my back started to go; the wrist isn't too bad, it's the back injury from Motegi that's been the problem all weekend. The first time I looked at my pit board there were 17 laps to go and I thought 'no, I've only done ten laps and I've got that again and another seven laps yet' so from then on it was a case of just hanging on. I couldn't hold off Simon and Taka, but I managed to finish with one point, which could have been crucial for second in the championship if Tito had finished second in the race today. I want to say a big thank you to Marc van der Straten and the whole team for all their hard work and support, not just for this season, but for all four seasons we've been together. Thank you for everything."

Livio Loi #11 // DNF // @LivioLoi
"This is not the way I wanted to end my rookie season. I got a pretty good start, but then I was pushed out at turn two and everyone just came past on the inside. I got my head down, managed to find a good rhythm and my lap times were good. I pushed my way back through to 21st, but then Bagnaia just came from nowhere on the entry to turn two and took away my front wheel. I don't know what he was doing, and I don't think he did either! It's a disappointing end to what has been a hard rookie season, but now I need to pick myself up and focus on a good result next weekend in the final CEV Moto3 race."

Michael Bartholemy // Team Principal
"It was a difficult race for Livio today, in more ways than one. He lost places on the opening lap and then, after working his way back through the field, got taken out by another rider. He has another chance next week to end his season on a high, when he returns for the CEV race here at Valencia, and I hope he takes it. Mika looked all set to battle for the podium five laps into today's race, but a problem with his rear tyre put paid to that. I know he'll be disappointed with the result, but he can take some consolation from fourth place in the championship standings. Scott has been in a lot of pain all weekend, but he was adamant that he was going to finish his last race for the team. His performance today was typical of Scott. Despite the pain he gritted his teeth and did what he needed to do to secure second place in the championship. It's this determination and courage that I'm confident will make him a contender in MotoGP over the next few years. On behalf of Marc van der Straten and everyone in the Marc VDS Racing Team, I'd like to say a massive thank you to Scott for the last four years. It goes without saying that we wish him every success with his move to the premier class next season. He will be sorely missed by the Marc VDS racing family."

More, from a press release issued by KTM:

Spain’s Maverick Vinales emerged triumphant in the 2013 Moto3 World Championship in a cliff-hanger finish to the season that gave KTM its second consecutive world title since the introduction of the discipline in 2012.

KTM riders finished top four in the championship with Alex Rins, Luis Salom and Alex Marquez finishing behind Vinales in that order. The final round saw Vinales on the podium with Kalex-KTM rider Jonas Folger of Germany in second and Rins in third.

KTM CEO Stefan Pierer and Pit Beirer, Head of KTM Motorsports were at the race to see KTM take its second title.

Pit Beirer: “It was incredible to be here to see these three guys on the KTMs fight it out for the title and it was impossible to tell which one of these would be the winner. It has been another great racing season for KTM. In the end it was Maverick who stayed calm at the right moment and managed to win and we give him our warm and sincere congratulations for a job well done. I think this also proves that KTM delivers equal quality and material to our customer teams as well as our own factory team.”

Vinales won the title with his third race victory of the season in a result that was decided in the last corners on the Valencia circuit in front of 90,000 euphoric Spanish fans. It was always going to be a fight to the last between the three title contenders. Luis Salom of the Red Bull KTM Ajo Factory Team went into the race as the points leader but he, Vinales and Rins were only 5 points apart.

After playing cat and mouse with Vinales and Rins for the first 14 of 24 laps it was disaster and disappointment for Salom who crashed out. He scrambled back into the race but eventually finished fourteenth, fighting for points right to the end. If something had happened between Vinales and Rins at the front, he was still in with a chance to take the title. Salom was generous with his congratulations of the new champion and can still be satisfied with a top season where he was the winningest rider in the discipline.

Vinales, a recognized talent in the discipline ended his final season by taking the title with just three race wins. Salom won seven and Rins won six races with the Spanish National Anthem being played at all races. Vinales and Salom now move up to Moto2 as teammates in 2014 while Rins, the youngest of the three will complete another season in Moto3.

Salom’s place in the Red Bull KTM Ajo Factory Team is being taken by Australian Jack Miller, who races with Karel Hanika, the 2013 Red Bull Rookies MotoGP Cup winner and Danny Kent of the UK who returns to the team where he raced in 2012.

Riders of the KTM Moto3 bike dominated the 2013 season making it a very clear victory in the Manufacturer’s title with KTM taking 425 points in front of Kalex-KTM with 191 and Mahindra in third place with 173.

MotoGP of Valencia – Comunitat Valenciana Circuit – Round 17

Moto3 Results
1, Maverick Viñales, Spain, KTM, 40:12.463
2, Jonas Folger, Germany, Kalex KTM, 40:12.649
3, Alex Rins, Spain, KTM, 40:12.650
4, Alex Marquez, Spain, KTM, 40:26.129
5, Efren Vazquez, Spain, Mahindra, 40:26.171
6, Alexis Masbou, France, FTR Honda, 40:41.050
7, Isaac Viñales, Spain, FTR Honda, 40:41.239
8, Ana Carrasco, Spain, KTM, 40:41.257
9, Philipp Oettl, Germany, Kalex KTM, 40:41.416
10, Miguel Oliveira, Portugal, Mahindra, 40:41.648

Other KTM
13, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Malaysia, KTM, 40:43.129
14, Luis Salom, Spain, KTM, 40:46.616
16, Jakub Kornfeil, Czech Republic, Kalex KTM, 40:50.519
17, Eric Granado, Brazil, Kalex KTM, 40:50.950
18, Arthur Sissis, Australia, KTM, 40:54.826
21, Jasper Iwema, Netherlands, Kalex KTM, 40:57.083
24, Toni Finsterbusch, Germany, Kalex KTM, 41:25.830
26, Florian Alt, Germany, Kalex KTM, 41:27.723
DNF, Livio Loi, Belgium, Kalex KTM, 20:29.541
DNF, Niklas Ajo, Finland, KTM, 18:39.420

Moto3 Standings after Round 17
1, M. Viñales, 323 (World Champion)
2, Rins, 311
3, Salom, 302
4, Marquez, 213
5, Folger, 183
6, Oliveira, 150
7, Miller, 110
8, Masbou, 94
9, Vazquez, 82
10, Fenati, 73

Other KTM
11, Kornfeil, 68
12, Khairuddin, 68
14, Ajo, 62
15, Sissis, 59
18, Oettl, 34
21, Carrasco, 9
22, Loi, 8
24, Iwema, 8
25, Granado, 7

Moto3 Manufacturers Standings after Round 17
1, KTM, 425
2, Kalex KTM, 191
3, Mahindra, 173

More, from a press release issued by NGM Mobile Forward Racing:

Corsi misses podium finish at Valencia

The 2013 season comes to an end at Valencia with three of the NGM Mobile Forward Racing riders in the Top10.

Simone Corsi started the race from the front row, managing a good start and maintaining the second place for most of the race. Halfway through the race the Roman rider’s lap times started to increase due to the usage of his tires, causing him to have chatter and be overtaken by Torres. While entering the last turn Corsi was in third place at but Zarco, who was not far behind him, overtook him as they were both crossing the finish line. Both riders were so close that race direction required photo finish images to determine the 3rd place winner. The timekeeping verification showed that the Frenchman crossed the finish line 0.001 seconds, preventing Simone Corsi from finishing on the podium.

A very good race performance done today by Alex De Angelis and Mattia Pasini crossing the finish line in the Top10. The rider from San Marino had to fight to regain the positions lost during the start of the race and finished in 7th place. Pasini was able to make a comeback and finish in 9th place. Spanish teammate Ricky Cardus finished the race in 22nd place, unable to continue the positive trend of results for the last race of the season.

The Valencia GP weekend puts and end to the 2013 season and the 2014 starts in only just a few days with a two-day test at Jerez de la Frontera his following Thursday with Simone Corsi and Mattia Pasini and their FTR bike.

Simone Corsi

“We were so close to the podium but the photo finish images confirmed I missed it by very little. I had a good start but I had some chatter. The Suter bikes have done really well at this track, they had more grip while after the first 10 laps I started having problems and had difficulty riding the bike. I believed I could finish on the podium today, I would have liked to finish the season with the podium but Zarco was faster than me on the last lap.”

Alex De Angelis

“I had a good start but found myself closed between two other rider and had to let go of the gas and lose positions. Its a pity because I could have been among the fast guys from the very start. At the beginning I didn’t have a good feeling with the front, it was sliding a lot and it was not until halfway through the race that I was able to feel more confident and start overtaking. All in all it has been a good race, I would have preferred to finish the season with a better result even if the last few races have a positive trend.”

Mattia Pasini

“I am happy with the race result: had we not made the mistakes we made yesterday during qualifying and had we started the race further up the grid I believe I could have been with Simone in the fight for the podium because on the second halfway of the race I had his same pace. I am satisfied, we have done our best and managed to finish the season with on positive trend. The important thing now is to look forward to the upcoming test on Thursday, keep improving and be ready for the first race of the 2014 season.“

Ricky Cardus

“I has been a very difficult race, I have not been able to continue the positive trend from the last few flyaway races. I started from the 18th place on the grid and my goal was to finish in the points. I didn’t have a bad start but I found myself stuck in traffic, causing me to lose the front group. I want to thank the team and sponsors for this season, I would have liked to do better.”

More, from a press release issued by QMMF Racing Team:

West battles from 21st to eighth and finishes the 2013 season on a high note – Sucipto runs out of luck

QMMF Racing Team finished the Grand Prix season 2013 with a celebration in the team garage: Anthony West, the Australian star of the team, had thrilled more than 100000 spectators around the famous Ricardo Tormo circuit with one of his most exciting races ever, storming from 21st place on the starting grid to eighth place at the chequered flag. West passed his rivals almost everywhere on the track, braking into the corners, running higher corner speeds and using smarter lines. He showed that, at 32 years of age, he is still at the top of his game and that he is the right choice to lead QMMF Racing Team into the future.

Team-mate Rafid Topan Sucipto had also aimed at a top result in the final race of the season, but struggled with a lack of speed as well as a lack of grip. The teenager from Jakarta tried to push anyway, but paid for his risks with a crash early on in the race.

“We tried to push Anthony towards better results, to believe in the bike and in himself. I think he did a great job today, putting on a good show for everybody. We are very happy to end the season with such a good result. This results boosts our motivation for next year”, said team owner and QMMF president Mr. Nasser KhalifaAl Attiya. “We will now meet with Anthony and discuss the options for next year. We would like to continue with him. A far as the second rider goes, we haven’t taken a decision yet. Our goal is to have a team with two strong riders in order to get the best possible results.”

Anthony West – 7th place
“I felt a little bit better and tried to be more confident today, more than in other races. I just tried to relax and try to forget about the things that were holding me back. Eventually, it turned out to be quite a good race. I wanted to finish strong for the team and I’m glad I was able to show a good result. I wouldn’t have known what to do without the help of my crew throughout this year, because they always tried to keep me motivated and to keep me going, even when things looked difficult. With today’s result, I am trying to pay them back for all the hard times I put them through in the season. Since QMMF let me continue next year, I also wanted to show them that I still can go fast. It’s a good way to finish and a good motivation for next year. Yesterday, I struggled with traction, but for today, we changed something from the warm-up to the race, which was the right move. I also changed my braking style into some of the corners and together with the set-up change, it worked well in the race. I was able to brake hard within the limit of the front tyre, which I hadn’t been able to do for a while. I had a good feeling and was able to push the bike, keep the corner speed and fight!”

Rafid Topan Sucipto – did not finish
“I had problems with the straight-line speed of my bike, it was much slower than in practice. I tried to make up for it pushing harder in the corners, but I didn’t have a lot of tyre grip, either. I ended up crashing on lap seven, which is a real shame because I wanted to finish the season on a high note. I learned a lot this year and I feel that I start to become more competitive, so I would really like to continue in Moto2 next year. I am convinced that I have the ability to get good results!”

More, from a press release issued by ItalTrans/AGP Racing:

Grand Prix de la Comunitat Valenciana
Valencia, November 10th, 2013

Both riders in the points in the last race for Nakagami with Italtrans

In the last GP of the season, Julian Simon classified eleventh, and Takaaki Nakagami thirteenth. The Spaniard competed in a livery (both bike and overall) that evoked the Spanish flag. Julian Simon (43'39”777 – 11th) “The idea of painting bike and overall in the colors of my country's flag has been a surprise organized by the team. I greatly appreciated it. Italtrans is a family, and I strongly feel the special atmosphere that surrounds it. The race has been tough, and good at the end, when I really enjoyed it. At the beginning, on the contrary, I had quite a few moments. Now we have to concentrate on this week's test, and prepare for next season”.

Matteo Gnesi (Simon race engineer) “Not bad, all in all. We suffered in the opening laps, and until half-race. Then, we had a big improvement, and Julian's fastest lap has been just three tenth slower than the race fastest lap, set by the rider who won. We have understood something important: in the past we often payed at the end, with less gasoline in the tank, while this time we didn't. Julian regained five seconds in six laps. One more second and half and he could get the seventh position”.

Takaaki Nakagami (43'43”764 – 13th) “I'm not very happy about the race: my potential was higher, I could have been in the top five. Unfortunately, after a few laps, and until the end, I suffered because of vibrations at the rear. After the race, we understood that the rear tire turned on the rim. I did my best; being this my last race with the team, I wanted a great result. This has been a very important season in my career – I grow up and improved a lot. We didn't get always the result we deserved, but had our good days. I want to thank the team, and Italtrans: I felt comfortable in the two season spent with them”.

Claudio Macciotta (Nakagami race engineer) “Our hope was for something better, I must say. This morning we did a rather radical change, asked by the rider for the race. Takaaki did the race the way he felt... I'm happy to have worked with him. It has been demanding, but also great”.

Luigi Pansera (Team Manager) “After having confirmed Takaaki Nakagami as a rider for the 2014 Moto2 season, Italtrans had two further meetings with Honda – a first one at Motegi, and a second one in Valencia. After careful consideration in collaboration with Fujiwara-San of Honda Corporation, it was agreed that the most favorable path to allow Takaaki to participate in MotoGP in 2015 would be for him to take part in the 2014 Championship with a Moto2 factory Team. Italtrans, which has an option in the contract for the 2014 season, has decided not to take up this option, believing this to be the best for Takaaki's career, and will not ask for any penalty payment. Italtrans would like to thank Takaaki for the work done, having contributed to a thrilling 5 podiums (four second places in a row, three pole positions) and wishes him the very best for his future. The name of the rider who will partner Julian Simon next season will be announced in the near future”.

More, from a press release issued by JiR Moto2 Team:

The 2013 season ends with the Valencia GP

The GP of Valencia today at Ricardo Tormo circuit closed the 2013 season of the Moto2 World Championship, putting an end to the battles that have excited for 17 races both the professional riders and the viewing public.

The JiR Team ran the race today with the young Japanese Kohta Nozane, who in his second spell on the MotoBI had a weekend of solid improvement demonstrating good adaptability skills. He steadily improved lap times in all sessions including during the race, which ended prematurely on the 15th lap due to a crash.

This completes the fourth season of Team JiR in the Moto2 Championship, with a positive balance in terms of progress and technological developments introduced by the team as well as the satisfaction of having led to the debut of several young riders supporting them with a top class technical contribution and human experience, that has allowed them to show off and to record steady improvements.

A special thanks goes to all the partners who believed in the project with the team, each providing valuable support in terms of technical, logistical or marketing issues.

GP of Valencia – Race classificaton:
1. Nicolas TEROL - 43'24.972
2. Jordi TORRES - +4.047
3. Johann ZARCO - +5.993
4. Simone CORSI - +5.994
5. Esteve RABAT - +8.316

2013 Riders World Championship – Final classificaton:
1. Pol ESPARGARO - 265
2. Scott REDDING - 225
3. Esteve RABAT - 215
4. Mika KALLIO - 187
5. Dominique AEGERTER - 157
6. Thomas LUTHI - 155
7. Nicolas TEROL - 150
8. Takaaki NAKAGAMI - 148
9. Johann ZARCO - 139
10. Jordi TORRES - 126
11. Simone CORSI - 105
12. Xavier SIMEON - 88
13. Julian SIMON - 79
14. Alex DE ANGELIS - 76
15. Anthony WEST - 61
16. Mattia PASINI - 55
17. Marcel SCHROTTER - 33
18. Toni ELIAS - 21
19. Randy KRUMMENACHER - 20
20. Sandro CORTESE - 19
21. Mike DI MEGLIO - 18
22. Danny KENT - 15
23. Ricard CARDUS - 7
24. Axel PONS - 5
25. Louis ROSSI - 4
26. Gino REA - 4
28. Doni Tata PRADITA - 1

More, from a press release issued by Cardion AB Motoracing:

Luca Scassa finishes on eighteenth position in Valencia,
Cardion AB Motoracing finishes season with five points

The substitute rider of team Cardion AB Motoracing, Luca Scassa finishes Grand Prix of Valencia in the Ricardo Tormo circuit on eighteenth position. The Italian rider that substitute Karel Abraham since the race in Aragon stays close points positions; his best result is sixteenth position in Phillip Island. Thus the team Cardion AB Motoracing closes the season with five points that have been achieved by Karel Abraham in races in Le Mans, Mugello, Assen and in Laguna Seca.

Luca Scassa, the substitute rider Cardion AB Motoracing
„We have not improved during the weekend as we wanted. On Friday we reached a good time but on Saturday we got stuck and we didn’t be able to improve it. I have done all I could, also team have made an excellent job, even that we did not be able to reach our goal. Last month and half was an incredible experience for me and I’m really happy that I got this opportunity. I have to thank you for it to Mr. Karel Abraham and also to all team that behaved very professionally and worked on one hundred percent. I’m glad to have a possibility to take part of MotoGP races and see everything from the inside. I just wanted to be faster. “

Marco Grana, chief mechanic Cardion AB Motoracing
„It has been a very tough racing weekend for us, we have been struggling with some problems all the time and even Luca didn’t feel on hundred percent on the bike. At the end we made a good choice to make a race on soft tyres, thus we could do a maximum. All the weekend did not achieved our desires. On Friday we were with “our” group and with good riders. On Saturday we were 0, 2 seconds behind De Puniet that was a good result considering that was fifth racing weekend on ART bike for Luca. After the start from twenty-one position Luca got in front and he was trying to fight with Laverty even if would beat him it would not change the final result, we would not achieve even one point. Anyway I’m glad that we have finished the season with substitute rider and I would like to say thank you to Luca. Already tonight we start to work on Honda to be one hundred percent ready for season 2014. “

More, from a press release issued by Monster Yamaha Tech 3:

Smith seventh, Crutchlow falls in final round

The 2013 MotoGP World Championship campaign ended with mixed emotions for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team in Valencia this afternoon, with Bradley Smith racing to a hard fought seventh place in an enthralling season finale.

There was to be no fairy tale final appearance in the French-based squad though for Cal Crutchlow, who crashed unhurt on the 10th lap while he was in hot pursuit of the leading group in front of a capacity crowd of almost 105,000 fans.

Smith made one of his trademark sensational starts and he led the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 challenge for the opening six laps by brilliantly fending off a hard charging Crutchlow.

Crutchlow moved into the top six with a pass on Smith on lap six and he immediately launched a fantastic charge towards the leading group of five. But his quest for a 13th top six finish of an outstanding third season with the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 squad was ended prematurely by a crash a third of the way into the 30-lap title decider.

Smith’s 13th top 10 finish of a hugely impressive rookie campaign never looked in any serious doubt thanks to his stunning early pace and he finished in a comfortable seventh.
Smith’s result concludes a fantastic final part of the 2013 campaign for the 22-year-old, who has finished inside the top eight in each of the last five races.

Today’s excellent display secured Smith a thoroughly deserved top 10 placing in the overall standings and he has made an invaluable contribution to ensuring the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team finished third in the Team World Championship rankings behind the Yamaha and Honda official factory teams.

Cal Crutchlow - DNF - 188 points :
"The last race with my Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team didn't really go according to plan, I’m feeling probably more disappointed for the team than for myself. We had an engine failure this morning and could only manage to run two full laps, so we were going into the race a little blind with the setup we had wanted to try. But I had a good feeling with the bike and after passing Bradley, I tried to close the gap to the riders in front of me but unfortunately I touched the curb and lost the front. We still made sure of fifth in the World Championship which was my target for this season, so I can’t be too upset with how this year went. I want to say thank you again to the whole team, we had three great years and a lot of good memories together. I learned a lot during my time with the team, but now it's time for me to move on to a new adventure."

Bradley Smith - 6th - 116 points :
Another seventh place, 116 points in the World Championship Standing and third place in the team standings should actually make me happy at the end of my rookie season. The gap to the fastest guys is less than 30 seconds again, and that is a positive end to the weekend, and a really positive way to end the year. I think we definitely showed good progress throughout the season and I want to thank my team for the amazing job they have done in teaching and helping me over the last 12 months in this really tough category. It has been a lot of fun as well and I'm really grateful to have such an experienced squad behind me. The next seasons starts on Tuesday already, and I'm really excited about it.

Herve Poncharal - Team Manager :
“We definitely have to be proud to be third in the Team World Championship again, behind Honda and Yamaha. Both Cal as fifth and Bradley ending his rookie campaign in 10th position have done a great job, so overall I think the year has once again been a really positive one. Sure we would have liked to finish on a different note with Cal, but he was pushing for a podium finish and nobody can blame him for this, especially because he already ensured his fifth position in Japan. Bradley showed once again another strong performance and during the last third of the race his race pace was really close to what Bradl and Valentino did and that gives us also a lot of confidence for the next year. We are really happy about the progress Bradley has made after just one season and we are excited to see what he can show in 2014. We are also looking forward to welcome Pol in our team tomorrow, and even though he crashed today he showed again that he had the speed. For sure Pol will be another great rider for us to work with in 2014. But today has also been very emotional for everybody at Tech 3 as we bid farewell to Cal. It has been a wonderful experience working so closely with him since 2011 and he feels like part of our family now. He has given us some magic and unforgettable moments and it is sad to see him leave. He has been an outstanding rider for us, Yamaha and Monster and I wish him tremendous success for the future.”