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27 days ago

Bastianini beats the rain for pole in Assen

Enea Bastianini timed his flying lap perfectly to just beat the rain and take pole in an incredibly tight Qualifying session at The Cathedral.

Highlights: Bastianini claims his first pole of 2016

Before the session it looked as though Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) was an odds on favourite for pole position but the rookie’s session didn’t go to plan. A crash with over half an hour to go at Turn 8 left his Honda a wreck. He had only managed two laps and found himself in 32nd, and thus last. With ten minutes to go he headed back out on track, his team having performed a minor miracle to repair the bike. He will start 16th.

Bastianini: "Our gap is minimum"

Rain flags once again made an appearance with less than ten minutes to go, riders pushing to overcome the conditions for a last fast lap. But for Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing Moto3) the work was already done. The Italian set a 1’42.463 to take the fifth pole of his career and the first of 2016. Bastianini looks to break the current pole position curse, the last 12 pole setters in Moto3™ unable to convert pole to victory, ‘The Beast’ was the last rider to win from pole way back in Misano 2015.

Migno: "The strategy was correct"

After showing well in Free Practice 3, Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46) took just his second front row start in the World Championship. Second on the grid matches his previous best result, second in Mugello just two rounds ago. The Italian is yet to take a podium despite having run on the world stage for a season and a half before 2016.

Bulega: "I hope to finish in the Top 5"

Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) made it an all-Italian front row to celebrate the 800th race in the lightweight class. Like his teammate, this is Bulega’s second front row start. His previous came in Jerez when he converted pole to a debut podium. He’s the highest placed rookie on the grid but has already proven he can battle with the best.

With Romano Fenati (SKY Racing Team VR46) in fourth, it was an almost perfect session for SKY Racing Team VR46. He starts round eight ahead of championship rival Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo), both out to make the most of Jorge Navarro’s (Estrella Galicia 0,0) absence.

Juanfran Guevara (RBA Racing Team) was sixth with home hero Bo Bendsneyder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) set to start his home race from seventh, his best ever grid position. Fabio Quartararo (Leopard Racing), Fabio Di Giannantonio (Gresini Racing Moto3) and Francesco Bagnaia (Aspar Mahindra Team Moto3) completed the top ten, all within 0.3s of pole position. In fact all of the top 20 were within just a second of Bastianini’s time.

Joan Mir (Leopard Racing), Khairul Idham Pawi (Honda Team Asia) and Alexis Masbou (Peugeot MC Saxoprint) will all be demoted three positions for riding slowly during various sessions.

Niccolo Antonelli (Ongetta-Rivacold) made an unforced error early in the session, sliding off at Turn 5. Fortunately the damage was slight and he was back out after minor repairs. Sadly a second crash would end his session, the Italian set to start 13th.

Jorge Navarro (Estrella Galicia 0,0) broke his leg while training and was replaced by Lorenzo Dalla Porta for the weekend. Dalla Porta leads the replacement riders after taking 12th on his Honda debut, having previously ridden the Husqvarna and KTM.

Jorge Martin (Aspar Team Mahindra Moto3) was unable to complete the weekend due to the right wrist injury he sustained in Barcelona, Albert Arenas stepped in at the last minute to fill in for him, securing 27th in just his second session of the weekend.

Karel Hanika lost his seat in the Platinum Bay Real Estate Team, lightweight class veteran Danny Webb stepping in as a permanent replacement. The Brit will start from 32nd for Sunday’s race.

#DutchGP: Moto3™ Qualifying Practice

Click here for the full Moto3™ FP3 results.