Moto3: Mir extends championship lead with faultless win

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Joan Mir has extended his lead in the Moto3 world championship with yet another faultless victory at the Austrian Grand Prix, picking his way through the field from a bad qualifying to take a commanding victory at the Red Bull Ring.

Forced to start in tenth after losing his best lap time for exceeding track limits, the Leopard Honda rider put on a perfect show, eventually taking the win by an impressive three seconds over the battle for second.

“It was a very hard race, but I wanted to win it! Throughout the weekend we worked very well with the team. In fact on this circuit we knew we had something more than the opponents and we saw today in the race! Departing from tenth I was worried a bit, but after the terrible start I had, I gave my best to recover. I did not want to be in the group because in this category it is always a risk.

“When I was in the lead and saw my advantage at just 0.5s I said it was time to push more and open the gap to everyone else. Before I was a patient pilot, this year I learned so many things, even to reason and handle delicate situations like this. My strongest point on this circuit was the braking. 64 points are so many, almost three races! It’s a pity that we still have lots of other races [laughs]. Seriously, I’m sure I’m looking at the rankings but I do not want to make calculations. We have to stay with our feet on the ground and try to always go to points.”

There was a closer battle behind him for second, however, with local hero Philipp Oettl eventually making it through the pack to take a podium finish, while Jorge martin rode through the pain barrier of a broken ankle to take the final spot.

It was a less pleasant result for Scotsman John McPhee, however, with the British Talent Honda rider looking set for a surefire podium finish until he was pied out by a lunge from Red Bull Ajo KTM rider Bo Bendsneyder.

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer