Johann Zarco makes promising start at Assen


Ajo Motorsport rider sets best time on Thursday and finds scorching pace.

Zarco, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2015

Zarco, Moto2, Dutch MotoGP 2015

After taking pole position and victory in Catalonia, Johann Zarco picked up from where he left off on day one of the Dutch TT. The Frenchman set the fastest lap of the day –1:37.670– and established an excellent pace –far quicker than that of the rest of the grid. The Ajo Motorsport rider managed to be fast with both new and used tires and rode entirely by himself. Satisfied with the work done today, Zarco hopes to be faster still tomorrow.

The sixth fastest time –1:38.707– in the first practice session for the Dutch TT was a positive result for Johann Zarco, who completed the 40 minutes with a single set of tyres. The Frenchman came out very strong, improving his pace on the different sectors with every lap before his only trip back to the pits. On his second stint he continued lowering his times, with his best coming on his last attempt.

Despite leading the first 15 minutes of the second session, it was after a change to soft tyres that Zarco became the first rider to go round in the 1:37’s. Showing great consistency, he would ride in that range five more times in the afternoon –the last of which being the fastest time of the day: 1:37.670–.

Friday sees the Moto2 qualifying session at 3:05pm, in which Zarco expects a minimum of a front row start. His previous best Moto2 grid position at Assen was second in 2013.

Results (Combined practice time FP1-FP2)
1. Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) 1:37.670
2. Simone Corsi (Kalex) 1:37.866 +0.196
3. Sam Lowes (Speed Up) 1:37.878 +0.208
4. Jonas Folger (Kalex) 1:37.948 +0.278
5. Alex Marquez (Kalex) 1:38.152 +0.482

Johann Zarco,
“I finished first, and this is important in preparation for Saturday’s race. For now we have the same objective as in Barcelona. I was able to ride with both hard and soft tyres, and obviously I was faster with soft tyres –but with the other compound it was not bad either. The soft went quite well for several laps. It has been a very positive day. It’s not an easy circuit, so I am staying focused and relaxed in order to enjoy the race. The weather could vary, so we cannot think that all is done –because things may change. Tomorrow I hope to be a little faster on some corners, so with the team I will analyse where to push in order to get a better feeling with the bike.”