It was no great surprise that Nelson Cruz’s Yamaha R1 lined up on pole for the start of Sunday’s Dunlop Motoval Cup race. By taking 2nd and 1st places respectively in the superpoles, Cruz continued the previous day’s result, anticipating what could be an excellent weekend for the Moto Galos rider. But the story of the race would be very different as in turn 1 of the Estoril circuit and at the beginning of the second lap an isolated crash relegated the R1 driver to 16th overall.
Cruz’s fall would dictate some momentary confusion in the peloton as Tomás Pio, who was in the leader’s wheel, would drop to 7th overall, Rafael Ribeiro (2nd on the grid with his Yamanha R1), would take 2nd position, but seeing Rui Palma in the his S1000R and 4th on the grid to take the lead. As the following laps progressed, the fight for victory was reduced to two with Ribeiro and Palma spinning in the same second.
This would be the case until the ninth lap when, braking for the inner parabolic, Manuel Junqueiro (Suzuki GSXR 600) and Gonçalo Fernandes (Honda CBR 600), class 1 drivers, were involved in a spectacular crash. Once the red flag was shown and the race was declared over, the final classifications returned to the eighth lap positions.
Victory would be for Rafael Ribeiro, who managed to overtake Rui Palma in his R1 before the interruption, leaving the man in the S1000RR at 0.561. Completing the podium was Hugo Lopes, who had started from 10th place on the grid and, with very solid progress, climbed the rankings.
A footnote still for Nelson Cruz who, after his crash on the 2nd lap, marked the rest of his race with a very strong pace, finishing 7th overall.
Just like yesterday, in class 1 and oblivious to all the vicissitudes of the race, Ricardo Rodrigues repeats his victory in the class and takes 5th place overall, but never in a relaxed manner compared to his most direct rivals, as Bernardo Aguiar (6th in overall and 2nd in his class with the Yamaha R6) was just 0.099s behind and Tomás Pio (7th overall and 3rd in class), at 0.431.