Rookie Pedro Acosta clinches 2021 Moto3 title after rival wiped out on last lap

Pedro Acosta becomes the first person since Loris Capirossi in 1990 to win a GP World Championship in his rookie season after clinching the 2021 Moto3 title

Pedro Acosta

Pedro Acosta held his nerve to wrap up the 2021 Moto3 World Championship with one round to spare, achieving the feat in his first season of Grand Prix competition.

The Spanish sensation - now 17-year old but only 16 when the season began - shrugged off any notion that his inexperience around dozens of more seasoned riders, some of whom have raced in Moto3 for several years, would be to his disadvantage by leading the standings since Round 2.

He is the first person since Loris Capirossi in 1990 to win the entry-level World Championship title in his first ever season of grand prix racing.

Coming into the penultimate round of the season at Portimao, Acosta held a comfortable 21 point lead over sole rival Dennis Foggia. However, there remained every chance the fight would head into a last round showdown at Valencia after the Italian led over the line for the final lap.

However, after Acosta swept back in front with a pass at Turn 3, Foggia was then wiped out by an overzealous attempt to pass by soon-to-be MotoGP rider Darryn Binder, whose attempt to overtake Sergio Garcia from a long way back in fourth instead resulted in taking himself and his two rivals down.

It meant Acosta ould be crowned champion on the spot, the youngster nonetheless going on to claim victory anyway, his sixth of the season.

Indeed, Acosta’s stunning maiden season in GP has left MotoGP riders, past greats and the media in no doubt he is destined for super stardom in the coming years.

Having burst out of the blocks with a second place finish - having started from the pit-lane - on his debut in Qatar, Acosta swept to a trio of consecutive wins in the following three races at Qatar II, Portima and Jerez. After this he’d add wins at the Sachsenring and Styria to stretch out his advantage, despite Foggia making a determined run at the crown with a strong patch of late season form.

However, victories aside, it is Acosta’s consistency in a championship notorious for incidents and wildly varying form if you get caught out in the final lap slipstream pack that has equally impressed, with only one result outside the top ten (11th at Silverstone) and a single DNF blotting his 17 race copybook.

One of two World Championships guaranteed to be going the way of Red Bull KTM Ajo Motorsport, Remy Gardner and Raul Fernandez pick up their inter-team fight for the Moto2 title later today.

With both riders heading to MotoGP with Tech 3 KTM in 2022, Acosta is already confirmed to be progressing to Moto2 with the KTM-funded Finnish outfit next year.