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Harada sets Brno circuit record in 250 first qualifying practice

Harada sets Brno circuit record in 250 first qualifying practice

Tetsuya Harada followed Max Biaggi´s example by setting a new pole 250 record of 2´03.563 at the Brno circuit, with an outstanding performance in the first qualifying practice for the quarter-litre class. Harada headed a swarm of Aprilia riders who emerged from all angles to deal a psychological battering to Championship leader Daijiro Katoh. Marco Melandri and Jeremy McWilliams took turns with Harada at the top of the time sheets, as Fonsi Nieto, Randy de Puniet, Roberto Rolfo and Roberto Locatelli launched into battle to try and ensure an all-Aprilia front row. Their attempts were futile however as Katoh responded with a fast lap to secure third spot on the grid between Melandri in second and McWilliams, fourth.

Emilio Alzamora joined team-mate Katoh in the battle for factory supremacy, edging his Honda onto the second row behind fellow Spaniard Nieto in fifth and ahead of Locatelli and De Puniet in seventh and eighth respectively. Rolfo was unable to maintain his early pace and eventually dropped to the third row of the provisional grid, relegated to tenth position by the Yamaha of Sebastian Porto.

Wildcard entries Henrik Voit and Norman Rank were the only riders to crash out of the session.


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