The Moto3 GP of Indianapolis was an all KTM affair on Sunday with victory to Spanish rider Alex Rins ahead of his teammate Alex Marquez with Maverick Vinales taking third place on the all-Spanish podium.
Jonas Folger of Germany was fourth on the Kalex-KTM and championship points leader Luis Salom of the Red Bull KTM Ajo team rode a heroic ride into fifth with an injured ankle. He was followed across the line by his two factory teammates Australian Arthur Sissis and Zulfahmi Khairuddin of Malaysia.
Salom had a massive high-sider on Saturday and had to ride with pain killing injections and a swollen foot. He did well to hold up in the race to pick up enough points to retain the championship lead.
Rins was impressive upfront in the three-way battle for the lead between him, Marquez and Vinales who had distanced themselves from the following pack half way through the race. Marquez, younger brother of Marc Marquez who is currently making a big impression in MotoGP, was on the podium for the first time and he even held the lead in the second last lap before his teammate Rins seized control in the final stage.
Despite Salom having to tough it out with an injured foot it was a good race day for the Red Bull KTM Ajo factory team with both Sissis and Khairuddin scoring their best results this season. Sissis also had his best qualifying for the season and made an impressive start, leading the race in the opening stages. Meanwhile it was clear from the outset that the race would be a challenge for the injured Salom. In the final laps he was engaged in a personal battle with the Kalex-KTM rider Folger and eventually had to settle for fifth behind the German.
Salom, with 183 points now has a narrow nine-point lead over Vinales with 174, with Rins in third with 167 points as the championship enters the second half of the season. There are still seven GPs still to be contested and competition is getting tight.
Riders face their next encounter next weekend at the sweeping Brno Circuit in the Czech Republic, a venue that is popular with both riders and spectators.
MotoGP of Indianapolis – Indianapolis Circuit – Round 9
1, Alex Rins, Spain, KTM, 41:37.200
2, Alex Marquez, Spain, KTM, 41:37.377
3, Maverick Viñales, Spain, KTM, 41:38.276
4, Jonas Folger, Germany, Kalex KTM, 41:45.838
5, Luis Salom, Spain, KTM, 41:46.461
6, Arthur Sissis, Australia, KTM, 41:51.639
7, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Malaysia, KTM, 41:55.802
8, Miguel Oliveira, Portugal, Mahindra, 41:58.267
9, Romano Fenati, Italy, FTR Honda, 41:58.332
10, Jakub Kornfeil, Czech Republic, Kalex KTM, 41:59.067
11, Niklas Ajo, Finland, KTM, 42:04.218
14, Livio Loi, Belgium, Kalex KTM, 42:09.856
17, Ana Carrasco, Spain, KTM, 42:32.472
18, Florian Alt, Germany, Kalex KTM, 42:32.546
19, Philipp Oettl, Germany, Kalex KTM, 42:32.551
Moto3 Standings after Round 9
1, Salom, 183
2, M. Viñales, 174
3, Rins, 167
4, Folger, 94
5, Marquez, 90
6, Oliveira, 77
7, Khairuddin, 49
8, Sissis, 49
9, Miller, 47
10, Binder, 46
Moto3 Manufacturers Standings after Round 9
1, KTM, 225
2, Kalex KTM, 94
3, Mahindra, 86