Solid qualifying for Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 for first race of 202007/03/2020
Jorge Martin and Tetsuta Nagashima go straight through to a tight Q2 session in Qatar, and will start from the third and fifth row, respectively.
The grid for the opening round of the 2020 Moto2 World Championship was decided on Saturday in qualifying at Losail. The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto2 riders went directly into Q2, thanks to the times set by Jorge Martin and Tetsuta Nagashima on Friday. The pair were under 6 tenths of a second slower than the poleman, with the Spaniard qualifying on the third row of the grid and his teammate on Row 5.
The final Free Practice session was used to the fullest, despite the high temperatures, which hindered work on track. Nagashima achieved a positive spot in the Top 5, thanks to a time of 1:59.270 set on his 14th lap of 16. Martin focused on bike setup over the course of 15 laps, and finished the session 11th, with his 1:59.447.
The two teammates went directly into a very close Q2, in which 17 riders were within less than a second off each other. Only 3 tenths separated Jorge Martin from the poleman, as he set his personal best of the weekend with a 1:58.532. The Spaniard will start from the third row of the grid, in 8th place, for the Qatar GP. Nagashima also improved his fastest lap, setting a 1:58.738 that earns him 11th place, and a Row 5 for tomorrow’s race.
The opening race of the 2020 Moto2 World Championship takes place over 20 laps on Sunday, as it gets underway at 6 pm local time.
Results (Qualifying sessions)
1. Joe Roberts (Kalex) 1:58:136
2. Luca Marini (Kalex) 1:58.136
3. Enea Bastianini (Kalex) 1:58.243 +0.107
4. Jorge Navarro (Speed Up) 1:58.316 +0.180
5. Bo Bendsneyder (NTS) 1:58.410 +0.274
8. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:58.532 +0.396
14. Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:58.738 +0.602
88 JORGE MARTIN
“It was a tough day. We found it very hard to begin with, but later on we tested a setup that is stable in both hot and cold temperatures. Without a doubt, this will be important for the rest of the season. I felt good in qualifying, although we made a change to the front that didn’t work out as we expected. I hope that tomorrow we can take the step forward that we need to fight for the Top 5. I can’t wait to start the first race of the year and I will give one hundred percent to leave Qatar with the maximum amount of points possible.”
45 TETSUTA NAGASHIMA
“The level of competition in qualifying today was very high. Even so, I felt very good. I know there are still points that we have to work on, but I’m ready for tomorrow. I’m happy with how the bike is running and the team are also making a great effort. Now it’s time to stay focused and be consistent so that the results begin to come.”