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Cardus finishes in point scoring position

  Date: Tuesday 25 March, 2014
Spanish stand-in rider Ricky Cardus produced a strong finish in 12th position on his debut outing for the Tech3 Racing Team aboard the Mistral 610 at the floodlit opening Qatar Grand Prix.

Replacing the injured Alex Mariñelarena, who returned this week to his native Spain as he continues his recovery programme, Cardus qualified in 18th position, having only ridden the French team’s exclusively designed and built Moto2 bike at the final pre-season test in Jerez before the Commercial Bank of Qatar Grand Prix.

Cardus undertook a positive start and progressed up to 10th place during the race. He consistently challenged for a top ten position and became embroiled in a thrilling battle with for example Kallio, West or Simeon. A last lap fall by another rider caused Cardus to take evasive action to avoid the crash, and slowed his rhythm meaning he ultimately crossed the line in 12th position.

Marcel Schrotter’s debut on the Tech3 Racing Team’s Mistral 610 for the 2014 Moto2 World Championship unfortunately came to a difficult end having crashed out on lap 12 after fighting for a points scoring finish. After having worked restlessly to solve chatter issues during the practice sessions, Schrotter qualified in an impressive 13th position and was fully confident of challenging for a top ten finish.  The young German rider had a positive start before running wide and losing positions but showed grit and determination and rode at a rapid pace to regain ground and overtook several riders, whilst closing in on a point scoring position. Unfortunately he fell at the final corner of the Losail International Circuit, with 8 laps to go, whilst trying to overtake Baldassari.

Ricky Cardus – 12th -  4points:
I’m happy to finish the race with a few points as a thank you for the Tech3 Racing Team and the faith they put in me, but on the other hand I’m also a bit disappointed because I think we still could have done better. I really had a positive start and moved up the order quite smoothly. So I found myself battling with Lowes and Kallio at the early stages, but I had to push hard to follow them and when they lowered the lap times I decided to keep my rhythm in order to feel a bit more comfortable without taking too much risk of crashing as I was determined to score points for the team. During the last lap, I was touched by a falling rider on the back of the bike, but luckily I managed to avoid a fall. Straight afterwards in the last corner Simeon run into my bike pushing me outside and both him and Folger managed to pass me. I definitely needed to be a bit more aggressive but for sure I won’t make the same mistake during the next round in Austin”.

Marcel Schrotter - DNF:
I am truly disappointed with today’s result as we lost a good possibility to start the championship in a strong fashion. My grid position was promising and also the feeling with the bike had improved after a tricky weekend so far.  The start itself was not bad either, but in the first corner I decided to stay outside, and unfortunately could not keep my line as I got pushed wide and had to avoid a crash. I started to recover quickly until I made a mistake a few laps later running into the gravel. I was 21st when I came back to the track, but again I was able to catch up the riders in front of me. This shows how positive my feeling with the bike was and I am really confident in saying that a top ten position would have been possible, but crashed at the last corner as I lost the front whilst trying to pass Baldassari . Now I can just looking forward to the next round in Texas in a couple of weeks.

Herve Poncharal – Team Manager:

The first race of the 2014 Moto2 season was an incredible one with an amazing fight at every level. For us it has been quite a challenging weekend, especially on Marcel’s side. Today he made a good start, but unfortunately got pushed wide and fell back a bit.  He was riding well and showed great spirit and determination as he caught back up, but then unluckily crashed while fighting for a top 15 position. However today was just one race, there are still 17 more to come and I’m confident Marcel will show his true potential. On the other side of the pit box we are truly happy with Ricky as he only had a very limited time on the bike. He had a good start, never gave up and could have finished inside the top 10. Unfortunately he got caught up in the last corner which allowed some riders to overtake him. Still 13th  is a good result and I want to thank Ricky for what he has done. We want to send our best wishes to Alex who was most certainly watching. We hope to have him back as soon as possible and are confident that he continues to recover well“.

Cardus finishes in point scoring position
Cardus finishes in point scoring position