There are always a first time for everything, today was an emotional race for Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo- Kalex)
The first Japanese rider to win a Moto2 race after Shoya Tomizawa won in 2010 season opener in the newly created Moto2 class. Tomizawa won the first race of the new class, at Losail in Qatar, winning by nearly five seconds. Nagashima however won the 2020 season opener with a 1.347 advantage over second place Lorenzo Baldassari (+1.347) and Enea Bastianini (+1.428) . Poleman Joe Roberts (+1.559) had to settle for fourth place, still an outstanding performance today for the young American. Nagashima’s ex-teammate Remy Gardner came in 5th.
Up until Qatar 2020, Nagashima hadn’t tasted podium success but the stars aligned in Doha as we witnessed a masterclass display from Nagashima – a ride Tomizawa would have been proud of. Immediately after taking the chequered flag, Nagashima pointed to the skies as he remembered his late friend.
The tragic loss of Tomizawa later in 2010 as a rising star lost his life at the San Marino GP, with Nagashima a close friend of Tomizawa’s as they rose through the Grand Prix ranks together.