Despite having the chasing pack catch up, Australian Jack Miller held on for his first ever podium finish under the Qatar floodlights, a win.
The Red Bull KTM rider denied Honda their much sought after victory when after breaking away from the rest of the field with Alex Marquez the pair were chased down and caught with a fierce battle for position for the win on the last lap.
In claiming thetop podium spot Miller became the first rider not to hail from Spain to win in any class since Scott Redding’s Moto2 Silverstone win last year.
|Rabat and Kallio celebrate their podium places Photo:Marc VDS
Marquez initially bowed to the pressure of being caught to fall to fourth, but the Estrella Galicia rider regained composure to claw his way back to second.
Class veteran Efren Vazquez used all his experience to slipstream his way into the final podium spot for Racing Team Germany.
Fourth went to top finishing Mahindra rider Miguel Oilveira, who allowed Alex Rins to do all the work to catch the leaders before pouncing for position.
Pole-sitter Rins had fallen to twelfth on the opening lap but was determined to get in the mix, having to settle for fifth over the stripe.
Jakub Kornfeil fought hard for sixth for Team Calvo with his team-mate Isaac Vinales not far behind in eighth, the pair being split by the Ongetta-Rivacold of Frenchman of Alexis Masbou.
Italians Niccolo Antonelli (Go&Fun) and Francesco Bagnaia (Sky Racing Team VR46) were next to finish in ninth and tenth respectively.
Top Briton John McPhee was next to cross the line in eleventh for Racing Team Germany ahead of Danny Kent in 13th on his Husqvarna.
Sky Racing VR46 rider Romano Fenati finished twelfth, top rookie Karel Hanika 14thh with Brad Binder securing the final point for the Ambrogio team .
Moto2 saw Taka Nakagami make an early lunge for the win, setting the pace on his Idemitsu Honda, in much the same fashion as last season a victory was again to elude the Japanese rider.
After starting on pole Tito Rabat was quickly pushed down the order but recovered to maintain his record of winning every time he has started from the top grid position.
Victory on his Marc VDS debut also equalled the fourth win of the Spaniards career, all coming in Moto2.
Nakagami initially finished in second, one place higher the japanese rider achieved last year, but was then disqualified after the race for running an non-reglation air filter.
It had been an all Kalex podium as Rabat’s Marc VDS team-mate Mika Kallio finished third despite running a makeshift bike with his chassis donated by the Petronas team following his crash into Cortese’s bike in qualifying. the disqualificatio moves him up to give Marc VDS a 1-2 finish.
Results here have been amended to reflect this after the Idemitsu Team had their appeal of the disqualification rejected.
After starting well then dropping into the chasing group Tom Luthi recovered to finish third for Interwetten.
Fourth went to Pons rider Maverick Vinales, the top finishing rookie also set a new best lap of the track, taking Marc Marquez record.
Simone Corsi was pushed down to fifth by the Spaniard but held off an impressive Sam Lowes, the highest placing Speed Up rider in sixth.
Sandro Cortese, on painkillers and with a swollen ankle and chipped bone – along with taking the first penalty point of the year for yesterday’s qualifying incident – made the best of his situation in seventh.
Jordi Torres also in pain after being hit in that crash again found himself racing the German for the same track, and finished eighth for Aspar.
Ant West fought into the top ten for Qatari team QMMF in ninth. Louis Rossi held tenth spot for SAG ahead of Jonas Folger at AGR in eleventh.
The final points went to Ricky Cardus (Tech3) in 12th, Randy Krumenacher (IodaRacing) in 13thand Pons rookie Luis Salom in 14th. Hafizh Syahrin gets promoted into 15th for Petronas after the Nakagami disqualification.
Among those who failed to finish were Gino Rea, who suffered an oil leak and Dominique Aegerter, who had been on to equal the longest run of consecutive finishes.
Moto3 Qatar Race Result Top 15:
1. Jack Miller AUS Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 38m 5.810
2. Alex Marquez SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (Honda) 38m 6.043
3. Efren Vazquez SPA SaxoPrint-RTG (Honda) 38m 6.090
4. Miguel Oliveira POR Mahindra Racing (Mahindra) 38m 6.105
5. Alex Rins SPA Estrella Galicia 0,0 (Honda) 38m 6.179
6. Jakub Kornfeil CZE Calvo Team (KTM) 38m 6.396
7. Alexis Masbou FRA Ongetta-Rivacold (Honda) 38m 7.919
8. Isaac Viñales SPA Calvo Team (KTM) 38m 7.971
9. Niccolò Antonelli ITA Junior Team GO&FUN Moto3 (KTM) 38m 13.963
10. Francesco Bagnaia ITA SKY Racing Team VR46 (KTM) 38m 13.983
11. John McPhee GBR SaxoPrint-RTG (Honda) 38m 14.005
12. Romano Fenati ITA SKY Racing Team VR46 (KTM) 38m 14.029
13. Danny Kent GBR Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo (Husqvarna) 38m 17.079
14. Karel Hanika CZE Red Bull KTM Ajo (KTM) 38m 17.102
15. Brad Binder RSA Ambrogio Racing (Mahindra) 38m 17.132
Moto2 Qatar Race Result Top 15:
1. Esteve Rabat SPA Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 40m 20.963
2. Mika Kallio FIN Marc VDS Racing Team (Kalex) 40m 22.022
3. Thomas Luthi SWI Interwetten Paddock Moto2 (Suter) 40m 24.704
4. Maverick Viñales SPA Pons HP 40 (Kalex) 40m 25.006
5. Simone Corsi ITA NGM Forward Racing (Forward KLX) 40m 26.793
6. Sam Lowes GBR Speed Up (Speed Up) 40m 35.133
7. Sandro Cortese GER Dynavolt Intact GP (Kalex) 40m 45.906
8. Jordi Torres SPA Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2 (Suter) 40m 46.159
9. Anthony West AUS QMMF Racing Team (Speed Up) 40m 46.285
10. Louis Rossi FRA SAG Team (Kalex) 40m 47.650
11. Jonas Folger GER AGR Team (Kalex) 40m 47.836
12. Ricard Cardus SPA Tech 3 (Tech 3) 40m 47.877
13. Randy Krummenacher SWI IodaRacing Project (Suter) 40m 52.634
14. Luis Salom SPA Pons HP 40 (Kalex) 41m 1.551
15. Hafizh Syahrin MAL Petronas Raceline Malaysia (Kalex) 41m 1.658