Australia’s Remy Gardner claimed his maiden Moto2™ victory at the Portuguese GP.
The result capped an incredible weekend for the 22-year-old, who also took pole position in his final race with SAG Racing Team.
Gardner started well off the line, taking the race lead before settling into a battle with World Championship hopefuls Luca Marini (SKY Racing Team VR46) and Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS).
The trio traded places throughout the race, both Marini and Lowes needing victory to keep their Moto2™ title hopes alive.
But Gardner would not be denied in the dying stages, the Aussie attacking aggressively on the penultimate lap to win by 1.609 seconds ahead of Marini.
“I have no words. Even after a couple of hours, I am still a bit emotional,” Gardner said.
“What a weekend. It started well with two solid sessions on Friday. I loved the track, it was super fun, like a rollercoaster.
“The lap that gave me pole was pretty gnarly, but we got it done and I certainly slept well going into race day.
“To get my first win is something I have dreamed about – and it hit me on the slow-down lap.
“We have been fast all weekend and I felt we could maybe win, and I just told myself it’s the last race, you’ve got nothing to lose, and it played out almost perfectly.
“We worked so hard as a team all year, we straightened out the weak points and even in the race I was still adapting and learning from Luca.
“I knew in the last couple of laps that we had the pace and when I passed him, I just pulled the pin and honestly, I am lost for words.
“I want to thank everyone that has stood with me and supported me, to the SAG Racing Team, to the fans, everyone.
“I move to a new team next year which is exciting, and I can’t wait to start the next part of my racing adventure.”
The Moto2™ title was won by Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team), who finished just nine points clear of both Marini and Lowes, while Gardner was sixth overall – the best result of his GP career.
Gardner moves to the Red Bull KTM Ajo team in 2021, where he is hopeful of being a Moto2™ title challenger.