Second row start for Zarco in Qatar19/03/2016
Ajo Motorsport rider will lead off the second row of the grid tomorrow, medical securing fourth place in qualifying on Saturday.
The first starting grid of the 2016 Moto2 season was decided on Saturday in Qatar. The reigning World Champion in the class, Johann Zarco, improved his fastest lap for the third consecutive day to place fourth in qualifying, meaning the Ajo Motorsport rider will start from the second row tomorrow.
Although there were strong winds in the early stages of the QP run, the Moto2 riders took very little time to go fast. Johann Zarco went from strength to strength over the duration of the 45 minutes. After going out with worn tyres for his first stint, the Ajo Motorsport put on fresh rubber at the end to complete three hot laps. The final one of these was concluded just after the chequered flag fell, giving him a time of 1:59.419 to place fourth –just 0.065s off the front row.
Zarco will fight for his first podium in Qatar tomorrow, with the aim of rectifying some misfortune from last season; in the 2015 Grand Prix at Losail, only a mechanical failure prevented him from taking the win. The race will start at 19:20pm local time.
Results (Qualifying practice)
1. Jonas Folger (Kalex) 1:59.052
2. Sam Lowes(Kalex) 1:59.124 +0.072
3. Alex Rins (Kalex) 1:59.354 +0.302
4. Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) 1:59.419 +0.367
5. Franco Morbidelli (Kalex) 1:59.509 +0.457
5 JOHANN ZARCO
“Qualifying went well. In the end, fourth position was the best I could do, and I only just missed out on the front row. My race pace is strong and I feel good again with used tyres. Everything is positive; I have to be focused in the race tomorrow, be fast at the beginning and then ride more calmly in order to finish very fast again. I want to thank the team, because they are doing a great job and I feel better every time I get on the bike –and I’m going faster and faster.”