Folger on top in opening Losail practice

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Germany’s Jonas Folger topped the timesheets in opening practice as Moto3™ launched the 2013 season in Qatar on Thursday evening. The Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3 rider led the way from Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Álex Rins and Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Luis Salom.

The session was not only the first of the 2013 season, but also marks the start of the tenth anniversary weekend for the Commercial Bank Grand Prix of Qatar at the Losail International Circuit.

As the only rider ducking under the 2’09.000 barrier, Folger led the way with his best effort of 2’08.951. This was almost four tenths of a second quicker than Rins, although little can be read into the times as the dusty track surface continues to improve lap by lap.

Numerous riders ran wide, not least as there is practically no grip when venturing off the racing line, although Hyuga Watanabe (La Fonte Tascaracing) was the only rider to fall, at the left-handed Turn 10 behind the paddock. He escaped the moment uninjured.

Just outside the top three was Efren Vazquez for Mahindra Racing, whose pair of bikes had briefly led the session earlier on. Niccolò Antonelli was fifth for GO&FUN Gresini Moto3, ahead of Miguel Oliveira on the second Mahindra and Brad Binder for Ambrogio Racing. Jack Miller (Caretta Technology – RTG), Jasper Iwema (RW Racing GP) and Maverick Viñales (Team Calvo) completed the top ten.

Moto3™ action will resume with second free practice, beginning at 8:55pm local time (GMT +3) and also lasting for 40 minutes. All of the action can be followed live on motogp.com.

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