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Page last updated at 09:53 GMT, Sunday, 31 May 2009 10:53 UK

Smith wins to lead championship

Bradley Smith

125cc victory was 'to the limit' - Smith

Bradley Smith took the lead in the 125cc world championship after claiming his second win of the season at Mugello in Italy.

The 18-year-old from Oxford started from pole and held off the challenge of Spain's Nicolas Terol, with previous championship leader Julian Simon third.

Smith came home 0.216 seconds in front of Terol, who led a tight battle for the lead until the last eight laps.

Scott Redding, who started in second place, finished seventh.

The win was the second of the season for Smith, who also won at Jerez, and it was from his first pole position of the season.

The track dried quickly after early morning rain, and a fierce battle followed.


Home favourite Andrea Iannone was in the thick of the action for the first six laps, before he was forced to drop out because of technical problems, much to the disappointment of the Mugello crowd.

"It was a shame I made the small mistake with about nine laps to go but I managed to compose myself and when the time was right I made the attack," said Smith afterwards.

"Nico was pushing me right towards the end, I thought in the last five laps I could break away but all I could see was 0.3, 0.3 (seconds gap) so I knew I had to keep my head down.

"Julian was doing well too - at one point, I thought they were going to break me but everything stayed together so to come out on top in a race like that means an awful lot for my confidence."

The 250cc race was similarly dramatic, with Mattia Pasini edging out Marco Simoncelli for victory.

Pasini went into the final lap in the lead but was passed by the first corner, with the lead changing hands numerous times before Pasini emerged victorious.

Championship leader Alvaro Bautista finished third, having been caught up in an amazing incident with Simoncelli on lap 10.

The pair touched fairings when battling for the lead and ran off into the gravel, but both managed to stay upright and rejoin the race.

Italian 125cc Grand Prix result:

1 B Smith (GB) Aprilia 40:09.523
2 N Terol (Spn) Aprilia 40:09.739
3 J Simon (Spn) Aprilia 40:16.637
4 P Esparagaro (Spn) Derbi 40:21.352
5 M Marquez (Spn) KTM 40:21.838

125cc championship standings:

1 B Smith (GB) Aprilia 74.5 points
2 J Simon (Spn) Aprilia 71.0
3 A Iannone (Ita) Aprilia 46.5

Italian 250cc Grand Prix result:

1 M Pasini (Ita) Aprilia 45 min 38.391 sec
2 M Simoncelli (Ita) Gilera @ 0.117 secs
3 A Bautista (Sp) Aprilia @ 1.293 secs

250cc championship standings:

1 A Bautista (Spn) Aprilia 83 points
2 H Aoyama (Jpn) Honda 76
3 M Simoncelli (Ita) Gilera 61

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see also
Redding sets out stall for Italy
29 May 09 |  MotoGP
Stoner triumphs in Mugello epic
31 May 09 |  MotoGP
Lorenzo secures pole at Mugello
30 May 09 |  MotoGP
Matt Roberts' Mugello report
29 May 09 |  MotoGP
Smith eager for repeat GP success
14 May 09 |  MotoGP
Smith storms to debut GP victory
03 May 09 |  MotoGP
Smith starts new season testing
05 Feb 09 |  MotoGP
Smith seals Aspar Aprilia switch
07 Oct 08 |  MotoGP
Smith clinches second in Malaysia
20 Oct 08 |  MotoGP

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