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MotoGP opener is postponed to today

ONLY 17 of the scheduled 60 laps were possible yesterday as heavy rain played havoc at the Losail International Circuit, forcing cancellation of the MotoGP season opener and badly affecting the 250cc and 125cc races.

With MotoGP riders positioned on the grid, the heavens opened up at the Losail Circuit, forcing riders and team mechanics to scamper to the pits.

Race organizers, after deliberations that lasted an hour, decided to postpone the race to 1800 GMT today.

Because of the heavy rain, only four laps were possible in the 125cc race, while the 250cc event was shortened to just 13 laps around the 5.38km circuit.

Hector Barbera of Spain won the 250cc race ahead of his two Aprilia teammates with a time of 26 minutes 50.940 seconds. Jules Cluzel of France secured second in 26:51.766 while another Frenchman Mike Di Meglio grabbed the third spot.

"I was injured in the second part of the season last year so this is a great beginning to the new season," Barbera said after the race. "I am very happy with this result."

Title favourite Alvaro Bautista of Spain, starting from pole, finished seventh.

Earlier, the 125cc event was halted during the fourth lap.

Aprilia rider Andrea Iannone of Italy took the win ahead of team-mate Julian Simon of Spain. Third place went to Derbi rider Sandro Coreste of Germany.


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