Front row for Zarco in Argentina


Ajo Motorsport rider takes second position in qualifying session and will start on front row for first time this season.

After he narrowly missed out on the front row for the opening round of the season in Qatar, Johann Zarco was able to get back on top this Saturday and take second on the grid for the Argentinian Grand Prix. At a circuit where he took pole position last year, the Ajo Motorsport rider was close to repeating the feat in 2016, but a late push from rival Sam Lowes denied him the top spot in qualifying. The reigning World Champion faces Sunday’s race with optimism after setting a great pace in every session so far.

Zarco kept his good feeling from Friday going in the first of Saturday’s sessions, improving his lap times from Day 1. The improvement in the condition of the asphalt at Termas de Rio Hondo was noticed from the start, allowing all riders to significantly lower their fastest laps. A 1:43.847 time placed him fourth on the timesheet for FP3 and overall.

It took just ten minutes of the qualifying practice for the Ajo Motorsport rider to improve his best time -and that of the entire Moto2 grid throughout the weekend. The time helped him lead the timesheets throughout the session, but he was pipped to the top spot after the chequered flag fell by Lowes. His 1:43.466 lap was bested by just a tenth of a second by the Briton.

The French rider will look to repeat his win from last season -which gave him the lead in the Moto2 World Championship- at the Autodromo Termas de Rio Hondo, when the race begins at 14:20pm (local time) on Sunday.

Results (Qualifying Practice)
1. Sam Lowes (Kalex) 1:43.347
2. Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) 1:43.466 +0.119
3. Jonas Folger (Kalex) 1:43.637 +0.290
4. Takaaki Nakagami (Kalex) 1:43.709 +0.362
5. Franco Morbidelli (Kalex) 1:43.733 +0.386


“We came into QP after setting a good pace. This is a circuit that I like and where I feel comfortable riding. In the qualifying session I was able to go fast from the start and put myself in first position almost the entire way. However, at the end Sam [Lowes] beat my lap. I congratulate him because he put in a great lap -I knew he could do it. In any case, I’m on the front row and that’s what matters. Tomorrow I want to win and I am calm. It’s time to face the most important part of weekend, the race.”