Three Honda NSF250RW riders were in the midst of a spectacular multi-man battle for victory in today’s opening race at Mugello.
Tatsuki Suzuki (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW), Andrea Migno (Rivacold Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) and Riccardo Rossi (SIC58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW) were at the front of the action and all had a chance of victory, with just 0.999 seconds covering the top six at the chequered flag.
Suzuki was undoubtedly the star of the 20-lap race, because he had to take a long-lap penalty for exceeding track limits which dropped him out of the lead group to seventh place. But the 24-year-old from Chiba fought like a lion to catch the leaders and take the lead. During the final lap he slipped to third, which gave him the chance to slipstream the two riders in front of him on the long run to the finish line.
His plan very nearly worked to perfection. He was catching the pair as he accelerated towards the finish, missing out on his third Grand Prix victory by 0.012 seconds. Disappointed not to win the race, Suzuki was nonetheless happy to have achieved his first podium of 2022.
Migno chased his Japanese rival past the chequered flag, the 26-year-old Italian missing out on the podium by just 0.125 seconds. Rossi, who certainly looked capable of scoring his first GP win, after leading the race at half-distance but had to be content with a close-run sixth place, 0.999 seconds behind the winner.
Last year’s Mugello Moto3 winner Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) rode a brilliant race until he slid off just after half-distance. The 21-year-old was in the lead, pushing hard and building a gap on the lead pack when he went down. He was unhurt and now stands fourth in the championship with eight races done and 12 to go.
Rookie Mario Suryo Aji (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) had a great first race at Mugello, finishing 13th, his best GP result, which betters his 14th in Indonesia. The 18-year-old Indonesian was fourth in the damp morning warm-up session and went into the race full of confidence.
Taiyo Furusato (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) placed 18th, after losing time in a start-line collision which took impressive young rookie Scott Ogden (VisionTrack Racing Team Honda NSF250RW) out of the race.
Moto3 riders and teams return to work next weekend at the Catalan Grand Prix, followed by the German and Dutch rounds on June 19 and 26.