Thomas Luthi Wins With A Last-Gasp Effort At Valencia


Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Paddock, Suter) won with a shock last-gasp victory in the Moto2 race in Valencia overnight after chasing recently crowned World Champion Tito Rabat (Marc VDS Racing Team, Kalex) throughout the entire race.

On several occasions the Swiss rider was to able to sneak past the Spaniard - for the last time at Turn Two on the final lap - but he was never able to make it stick, Rabat always reclaiming the advantage in an instant.

As the pair accelerated out of the final corner for the last time Rabat was several metres in front and seemed all set for his eighth victory of the season when he suffered slight fuel starvation and Luthi went charging past. Rabat's problem was caused by a lower track temperature that caused more slides which used more fuel, leaving him a fraction short at the end.

That lost Rabat just enough acceleration to allow Luthi to blast past to win his second victory from the last four races and secure fourth place in the championship.

Luthi has come on strong during the last few races thanks to a revised chassis from Suter that turned his season around, allowing to win his first race of the year at Motegi.

At the line the pair were covered by just 0.133 seconds.hard-fought Honda-powered series.

"That was a surprise! Out of the exit of the last corner I couldn't believe it - I thought maybe it was a yellow flag - but then I realised something was wrong with his bike and I took profit of that." Luthi commented.

"Tito was so strong, he made no mistakes and I couldn't really get by him all race, until those last few seconds. Now me and my team go our separate ways and I think this is the best way to thank them for all their work."
Rabat - wearing special gold-liveried bike and leathers in celebration of his title win had to settle for second place - Credit: Honda Racing
Rabat - wearing special gold-liveried bike and leathers in celebration of his title win - was obviously bitterly disappointed at losing the race in the final few metres but that cannot take away from his brilliant 2014 season during which he's scored 11 pole positions and a total of 14 podium finishes from 18 races.

"I made a good start and found a good rhythm. I wanted to stay in front of Tom because his bike was faster than mine. But the cooler temperature made the bike slide more, so after the last corner the last bit of fuel didn't make it into the engine properly." Rabat explained.

"Anyway, I'm so happy with the work of the team and I've had the best bike all season. My thanks to my team and sponsors and sorry to the fans for today!

Johann Zarco (AirAsia Caterham, Caterham Suter) took a strong third-place finish all on his own. It was the French rider's fourth podium result of the year. He spent the early laps battling with Dominique Aegerter (Technomag carXpert, Suter) and Franco Morbidelli (Italtrans Racing Team, Kalex), who later fell and remounted to finish 21st.

Some way behind Zarco, Luis Salom (Paginas Amarillas HP 40, Kalex) won a great battle for fourth place with Xavier Simeon (Federal Oils Gresini, Suter), the pair crossing the line separated by just six tenths of a second. Aegerter finished sixth, just one second behind Simeon.

Sam Lowes (Speed Up, Speed Up) was a lonely seventh, well ahead of a five-man contest for eighth which was won by Marcel Schrotter (Tech 3, Tech 3) ahead of Anthony West (QMMF Racing Team, Speed Up), Lorenzo Baldassari (Gresini Moto2, Suter) and Jordi Torres (Mapfre Aspar Team, Suter).

The 9th place result for Anthony West secured 12th position overall in the 2014 Championship.

Maverick Vinales (Paginas Amarillas HP 40, Kalex) and Mike Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team, Kalex) were all set to battle for runner-up spot in the championship until they collided on the first lap. Vinales continued following repairs but soon pulled into the pits again, his race over.
Moto2 Valencia Podium - Credit: Honda Racing
Moto2 Round 18 Results:
1 Thomas Luthi 43'08.366 SWI SUTER Interwetten Paddock Moto2
2 Esteve Rabat 0.133 ESP KALEX Marc VDS Racing Team
3 Johann Zarco 10.728 FRA CATERHAM SUTER AirAsia Caterham
4 Luis Salom 13.014 ESP KALEX Pons HP 40
5 Xavier Simeon 13.689 GER SUTER Federal Oil Gresini Moto2
6 Dominique Aegerter 14.706 SWI SUTER Technomag CarXpert
7 Sam Lowes 18.825 GBR SPEED UP Speed Up
8 Marcel Schrotter 30.185 GER TECH 3 Tech 3
9 Anthony West 30.227 AUS SPEED UP QMMF Racing Team
10 Lorenzo Baldassarri 30.604 ITA SUTER Gresini Moto2
11 Jordi Torres 30.615 ESP SUTER Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2
12 Ricard Cardus 33.422 ESP TECH 3 Tech 3
13 Jonas Folger 33.594 GER KALEX Argi̱ano & Gines Racing
14 Takaaki Nakagima 33.997 JPN KALEX Idemitsu Honda Team Asia
15 Louis Rossi 34.007 FRA KALEX SAG team
16 Hafizh Syahrin 35.578 MAL KALEX Petronas Raceline Malaysia
17 Robin Mulhauser 35.691 SWI SUTER Technomag CarXpert
18 Nicolas Terol 46.996 ESP SUTER Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2
19 Ratthapark Wilairot 50.650 THA CATERHAM SUTER AirAsia Caterham
20 Roberto Rolfo 51.877 ITA SUTER Tasca Racing Moto2 Moto2 Final Championship Standings 1 Esteve Rabat 346 pts
2 Mika Kallio 289 pts
3 Maverick Vinales 274 pts
4 Thomas Luthi 194 pts
5 Dominique Aegerter 172 pts
6 Johann Zarco 146 pts
7 Simone Corsi 100 pts
8 Sandro Cortese 85 pts
9 Luis Salom 85 pts
10 Marcel Schrotter 80 pts
11 Franco Morbidelli 75 pts
12 Anthony West 72 pts
13 Sam Lowes 69 pts
14 Xavier Simeon 63 pts
15 Jonas Folger 63 pts
16 Jordi Torres 57 pts
17 Julian Simon 56 pts
18 Ricard Cardus 45 pts
19 Hafizh Syahrin 42 pts
20 Alex De Angelis 37 pts

Top Image: Thomas Luthi Edges past Tito Rabat on the final corner to win the Valencia Moto2 race

Credit: Honda Racing

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