For the third Grand Prix in a row the KTM GP Academy was able to celebrate Moto2 podium presence as Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Augusto Fernandez fought to 3rd place at a sweltering Circuit de Barcelona – Catalunya.
Red Bull KTM Tech3’s Deniz Öncü started from the middle of the front row of the grid and the position helped the Turk slide directly into the vast leading group of almost 20 riders that set the pace. Among the gaggle was also Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Jaume Masia and Öncü’s teammate Adrian Fernandez, who lead a Moto3 GP for the first time until he slipped back to classify 10th; his second consecutive top ten result. Öncü and Masia were inside the scrap for the podium places through the 21-laps and went on to grab 5th and 8th at the finish line and both were slightly upstaged by BOA Motorsports’ David Muñoz. The Spanish teenager burst through in just his second Grand Prix start to finish runner-up and less than two seconds behind victor Izan Guevara.
Red Bull KTM Ajo rookie Daniel Holgado was unlucky to be hit and sent to the ground by two falling riders into Turn 10 while negotiating lap 13.
Masia is 3rd in the world championship standings and one of only three riders to have breached the 100 point mark while Öncü is also in the top five.
David Muñoz: “A great second place in my second race in the world championship! Thanks to my team, my family and my manager. I pushed so hard on the last lap: this was a result that is so important for me.”
Pedro Acosta came to Catalunya flush with the positive feeling from his maiden Moto2 race win in Mugello the previous Sunday. The Red Bull KTM Ajo star had to play second fiddle to teammate Augusto Fernandez however. The Spaniard took part in a captivating battle for the win that saw four riders separated by just over half a second at the finish. Fernandez was able to snatch 3rd place for his second podium appearance of the season while Acosta ploughed a course from the mid top-15 to reach a decent 6th.
Augusto Fernandez: “I’m very happy to be on the podium and especially because this was a tougher race than Mugello last week. It was very hot out there so I was struggling a lot with the front tire: I think everybody had the same problem. When I had some space and free air then I could recover the feeling but it was so difficult in the group. For this reason it was tricky to pass and overtake today and we have to feel pleased with this result”
After back-to-back weekends in Italy and Spain, MotoGP breaks for a week before another double salvo with trips to Germany (Sachsenring) and Holland (TT Circuit Assen) in June.
Results Moto3 Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya 2022
1. Izan Guevara, (ESP), GASGAS 38:22.351
2. David Muñoz (ESP), KTM +1.975
3. Tatsuki Suzuki (JPN), Honda +1.985
4. Sergio Garcia, (ESP), GASGAS +2.036
5. Deniz Öncü, (TUR), Red Bull KTM Tech3 +2.752
8. Jaume Masia (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo +3.633
10. Adrian Fernandez (ESP) Red Bull KTM Tech3 +5.285
DNF. Daniel Holgado (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo
Results Moto2 Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya 2022
1. Celestino Vietti (ITA) 38:42.958
2. Aron Canet (ESP) +0.081
3. Augusto Fernandez (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo +0.522
6. Pedro Acosta (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo +6.298