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MotoGP Portimao II: Moto3 race weekend preview

Acosta vs Foggia: will the Algarve GP stage the final showdown for the Moto3 crown?

The Emilia-Romagna GP was a nail-biter for Moto3. Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) had his first shot at the crown and rival Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) started down in 14th, before dropping even more places on lap one. The Italian dug deep despite the pressure, keeping his head to take victory – his third on home soil this season and second at Misano – and keep the battle raging on to the rollercoaster. There could hardly be a better place to stage another showdown either, as the paddock's first visit to the venue this season saw the fight for the win boil down to a duel between the leading two.

Then, it was the Spaniard's second win and third podium in his first three Moto3 races, but now there's a little more on the line as he arrives 21 points clear in a bid to become the first rookie lightweight class Champion since Loris Capirossi in 1990. Unlike Misano, where Acosta depended on Foggia's result to be able to secure the crown, Portimão offers the Spaniard a simple equation: win the race, win the Championship. There are other combinations too of course, but a victory for Acosta in one guarantees a victory in the other regardless. Otherwise, the magic number is 26 for the rookie sensation... so just five more than Foggia.


The fact the two already duelled at the track only adds to the spectacle, and we know already there will be a spectacle. We also know, however, that there will likely be a group fight at the front for at least some of the race. Last time on the Algarve it was pole-sitter Andrea Migno (Rivacold Snipers Team) completing the podium as he fought off the rest of the freight train, which included compatriots Niccolò Antonelli (Avintia VR46 Academy) and Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team). Ayumu Sasaki (Red Bull KTM Tech3) took fourth as part of the pre-injury early season run of form he's getting back to, and Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was fast throughout the weekend before crashing in the race but still rejoining to take ninth place. He also arrives fresh from second place at Misano.

Sergio Garcia (Gaviota GASGAS Aspar Team) is expected to be back alongside his rookie teammate Izan Guevara, who was fast once again at Misano. Darryn Binder (Petronas Sprinta Racing) will want more after having a pitlane start in the Portuguese GP, the South African now taking on two final chances to score big in Moto3 ahead of his move to the premier class, while teammate John McPhee will hope for a smoother weekend after suffering with illness at Emilia-Romagna.

Acosta vs Foggia has been the duel for the Championship for a few races now, and the Algarve GP could be the final showdown for the crown. Can Acosta wrap it up on the second time of asking? Or will Foggia find one final stand to take it down to Valencia?

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