Johann Zarco places third in the rain in Australia


Ajo Motorsport rider sets third fastest time on first day at Phillip Island, where FP2 was suspended due to bad weather.
Heavy rain and low temperatures threw plans for the first day at Phillip Island into disarray. The reigning Moto2 World Champion, Johann Zarco, adapted quickly to the difficult conditions of a completely wet track and set the third fastest time in FP1. The rain would not allay, however, and the accumulation of water on the track surface forced the cancellation of both the second Moto2 and MotoGP sessions.

The intermediate category riders contested their first and only practice session amidst track temperatures as low as 14°C and heavy rain, forcing almost every competitor to spend the final minutes in the pits. Zarco was one such rider, after 14 laps which placed him third fastest with a time of 1:48.129.

The weather forecast for Saturday shows no signs of improvement, but Zarco will be looking for a second consecutive pole position in qualifying, after that achieved in Japan last week.
Results (Combined practice time FP1-FP2)
1. Jonas Folger (Kalex) 1:47.629
2. Danny Kent (Kalex) 1:47.798 +0.169
3. Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) 1:48.129 +0.500
4. Lorenzo Baldasarri (Kalex) 1:48.135 + 0.506
5. Alex Rins (Kalex) 1:48.199 +0.570


“Today it was raining a lot in FP1. I found a good pace from the start, improving with every lap and getting closer to the fastest times. I felt comfortable riding, but in the end the rain got stronger and it was too risky. In FP2 the team and I waited to see if we could go out, but the weather got worse and Race Direction decided to cancel the session. It was the right choice. For tomorrow we have two plans, depending on whether or not it rains. If it rains we have to be careful, go step by step and not hurry. In the event that it is dry, it will be important to find a feeling quickly, because we will have little time to work on the setup. We’ll see tomorrow.”