Moto2 Assen: Fernandez takes maiden win in incident filled thriller

Augusto Fernandez won an action packed Dutch Moto2 Grand Prix in Assen, his first ever world championship win.
Moto2 Assen: Fernandez takes maiden win in incident filled thriller

Augusto Fernandez avoided all the on-track trouble to become a Moto2 Grand Prix winner for the first time in the Dutch Grand Prix in Assen.

The Flexbox HP40 rider has not had the most straightforward of seasons, and missed the Austin round after his huge Argentina crash earlier in the season. Assen, however brought some close racing with the Moto2 riders all bunched up on track allowing him to improve quickly from his thirteenth place grid start.

The Pons Kalex team rider steered clear of trouble and took advantage of his rivals bike woes to bring home his first ever victory.

He was joined on the podium by Brad Binder. The KTM has not had the smoothest transition into the Triumph era, but the Red Bull Ajo team looked to have made big progress ahead of this race, with Binder qualifying second.

The South African was at the front for much of the race before chatter from the bike became harder to handle over the closing laps, a determined performance saw him hold on to second.

Third went to Luca Marini, who too had bike issues, and had already given himself plenty to do after qualifying down in eleventh for Sky Racing Team VR46. He to rallied and avoided all those who fell ahead of him to claim third. 

Tom Luthi was unlucky to miss out on a rostrum finish in fourth - he had already used up a lot of luck earlier in the race when Xavi Vierge collected Enea Bastianini right in front of him, hitting his bike. The Swiss rider amazingly managed to stay onboard and continue to fight for the podium places.

Luthi now leads the championship standings with a total of 117 - six clear of Alex Marquez who was taken out of the race.

SAG Team rider Tetsuta Nagashima continued his run of points finishes with his best ever Moto2 result, claiming a hard fought fifth.

Andrea Locatelli crossed the line a distant sixth for Italtrans, holding off a rapidly approaching Stefano Manzi, who climbed to seventh for MV Agusta after starting from the back of the grid following his penalty.

Marcel Schrotter managed an eighth place finish on the second Dynavolt entry despite having to run around the penalty loop for exceeding track limits.

Dominique Aegerter (MV Agusta Idealavoro Forward) recorded his best result so far this season in ninth, with Marco Bezzecchi having his best race since moving up to Moto2 - he was top rookie on his first top ten finish for Red Bull KTM Tech 3.

Fabio Di Giannantonio claimed a solid eleventh for Speed Up while Jake Dixon (Samar Qatar Angel Nieto Team) fought the odds for twelfth. Dixon, who had already had his qualifying wrecked after his handlebar fell off, had a issue with his race tyre and needed to change it as the grid formed - he only had used tyres left so completed the race on already used rubber.

Lukas Tulovic was yet another rider to beat their previous best, he finished 13th for Kiefer Racing.

The final points available went to Iker Lecuona in 14th for American Racing KTM after a trip through the gravel early on and his team-mate Joe Roberts in 15th.

Home rider Bo Bendsneyder along with Nicolo Bulega and Simone Corsi were the first to exit, all falling at turn seven with just two laps run.

Remy Gardner had a brilliant Saturday which saw him claim his first ever pole, but from the launch off the line his bike seemed to have issues, the Australian managed the bucks and wobbles for several laps until he ended his race in the gravel with fourteen laps to go.

Sam Lowes exited seconds later - he was hit near the handlebars by Jorge Martin and skittled into the gravel at turn nine. Martin only lasted a handful of laps more before he too fell - he was stretchered off after his crash.

Jorge Navarro was the next to fall, just before Vierge collected Bastianini, with Lorenzo Baldassarri crashing in front of Alex Marquez shortly after, meaning none of the EG 0,0 Marc VDS riders finished the race.

No Honda Team Asia riders took part in Assen - Dimas Ekky Pratama was taken out by Stefano Manzi earlier in the weekend, resulting in his back of the grid penalty. Somikat Chantra crashed in warm-up and fractured his left wrist.

Phillipp Oettl also sat out the race, still feeling the effects of his injuries and concussion after his fall in Catalunya.