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MotoGP Qatar: Lowes ‘not convinced’ by Moto2 jump-start penalty

Britain’s Sam Lowes fell foul of controversial jump-start penalties today in the Qatar Moto2 race and says he isn’t convinced he was outside of the rules but says he will take it on the chin and is pleased he only lost one point to Alex Rins, who was also penalised.

Lowes was one of six riders who were given penalties in two groups for jumping the start while Franco Morbidelli was handed a 20-second penalty on the last lap which dropped him from second to seventh. Lowes doesn’t believe he broke the new-for-this-year rules, which state an advantage must have been gained.

The Isle of Man resident moved, stopped and then moved again due to flickering lights something that was backed up by Alex Marquez, who also saw the start lights go off and then come on again momentarily.


“It’s a strange one, did I jump the start? Maybe I did. For me, the lights were held a long time, then they flickered, so I moved, stopped and then moved again. The new rule is that if you stop it’s not a penalty. I qualified in second and was fifth going into the first corner so I don’t know. They gave other people a penalty too. For me, they ruined the race,” said Lowes, speaking in Qatar.

“The lights are supposed to be held for two to five seconds, but for me it was longer than that but other people didn’t. I jump. Rules is rules. I came through good, I had the best pace, I did the best lap on the last lap and that wasn’t risking too much. I nearly crashed halfway through and lost a lot of time.

“I could see there was a big gap to Rins so I wasn’t going to get any further up. I was pushing to get to him but to only lose one point is not ridiculous. It’s better to get the finish after starting last year so badly. All my main rivals didn’t do well. I’m gutted, I worked hard, I stayed on the bike. It’s a mistake, I’m not convinced but I’ll take it on the chin and move on.”

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