Ellison breaks into top 10 despite terrible weather in Malaysia

First published in Motor sport

KENDAL rider James Ellison defied the worst of conditions to claim his best result of the season with a stunning ninth place at the Malaysian MotoGP in Sepang.

The 31-year-old PBM-UK rider had to overcome difficult conditions throughout the weekend and posted 17th fastest in the opening free practice session before claiming 10th in FP2 as the rain played havoc with proceedings.

Having qualified in 16th place aboard the CRT-specification Aprilia ART, Ellison was confident of a good result although race conditions were far from ideal and gradually deteriorated to the point that torrential rain caused the race to be red-flagged seven laps short.

At that point, Ellison was battling for the CRT lead with Aleix Espargaro but with the race shortened, he was denied the opportunity to claim his second CRT victory.

However, the top 10 placing meant he claimed the best result to date for the Penrith-based team in their rookie season in MotoGP.

James Ellison said: "I really enjoyed the race although we didn't have the front suspension just right but I managed to get around it by adapting my braking technique to compensate.

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“I got into a good rhythm and passed quite a few riders while chasing down Aleix. I closed him down towards the end but the race was rightfully stopped so we bagged a ninth place.

“I'm so happy for all members of the PBMUK team and already looking forward to my favourite track Phillip Island."

The result sees Ellison climb two places to 16th in the World Championship points table with the PBMUK team also climbing one place in the team's standings going into the next round at Phillip Island in Australia on Sunday.

Phil Borley, technical director, said: "It was an excellent ride by James in extremely difficult conditions and that has rewarded PBMUK with our highest place finish.

“When other riders were making mistakes, James kept his composure to achieve our first top 10 finish. We now go to Phillip Island with the intention of achieving another result that maximises our potential."

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