Rory Skinner scored his first world championship points at today’s Australian Moto2 Grand Prix, which was cut short due to weather conditions which saw the riders battling extreme winds and driving rain at the Phillip Island circuit.
The Scot’s first trip to the Island got off to a steady start as he racked up 22 laps on his OnlyFans American Racing Team Kalex in Friday’s first practice session in a bif to learn the circuit. Despite a brief red flag in FP2 for the local wildlife on track, Rory improved 1.5 seconds to finish Friday in 26th.
He continued his progress into an extra-chilly Saturday, knocking another half a second off his previous best time to end final practice in 24th. Unfortunately, it was a difficult qualifying for the former British Supersport Champion as he rounded it out in 29th. However, a penalty for Mattia Casadei promoted Rory into 28th place.
Testing out the wet track conditions in the newly added 10-minute warm-up, Rory ended the morning session in 20th.
Making a stellar start, the 22-year-old made up seven places on the first lap, jumping from 28th to 21st before making his way into 18th by lap two. Despite a near highside on lap three at turn 10, Rory continued to gain places in the wet conditions as he moved into 12th place before the red flag came out to leave Phillip Island with two points, his first in the world championship.
Speaking after the race, Rory said: “My weekend was quite good. Well, the race was, the rest of the weekend was a bit difficult. Friday was good and Saturday morning too but I quite enjoy this track; it’s fast and flowing, I think every rider that comes here enjoys it too as it’s a proper riders’ track.
“I made a mistake in qualifying yesterday and didn’t put myself in the best place to make the most of the time on track. For the race today, when the weather changed so dramatically, it’s fair to say the rain helped me. Coming from P28 on the grid to P12 to get my first Moto2 world championship points, I’m super happy with that. It’s been a long old season so far but I’ve finally got the points in the bag and it’s a weight off my shoulders. We’ll continue the hard work but I don’t have to put as much pressure on myself which will help me in the future.
“I just want to say a massive thank you to my team, John and Eitan for all their work and support to get me here.”