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22 days ago
By motogp.com

Bulega heads FP3 as Di Giannantonio remains on top overall

The Italians are getting serious at Brno, as mixed conditions provide exciting action ahead of qualifying

After rain overnight but a huge downpour this morning, the Automotodrom Brno circuit was wet but slowly drying in the Moto2™ FP3 session. A dry line around the 5.4km circuit meant that track conditions weren’t too dissimilar from yesterday, with Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) heading the session from an improving Lorenzo Baldassarri (FLEXBOX HP 40) and Augusto Fernandez (FLEXBOX HP 40). However, Fabio Di Giannantonio (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) leads the Moto2™ field ahead of qualifying this afternoon.

The action begun but immediately, riders returned to pitlane to change from wet tyres to dry tyres, showing that conditions were improving quicker than anticipated. It was an eventful venture out to the track on dry tyres for South African Steven Odendaal (NTS RW Racing GP), who was thrown over the top of his NTS machine before landing with both legs off the machine, similar to Randy Mamola back at Misano in 1985.

As the track conditions continued to improve, riders soon got to within two seconds of yesterday’s times. Halfway through the session, it was Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) who was on top of the pile, with the Italian trading places with the likes of Xavi Vierge (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2). Riders escalated up and down the order, with the rain staying away, getting nearer to the times from the opening day.

From Odendaal’s save, there was an on-track confrontation between Sam Lowes and Mattia Pasini (Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2), with the two riders clashing at Turn 1. Both riders remained upright and continued with their session.

The final minutes of the session saw lots of changes at the head of the standings, with a variety of riders and manufacturers vying for the top positions. Xavi Vierge was the first of the leading riders to set a time that was better than his from yesterday, although nobody was able to topple Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) at the end of the session, finishing on top and consolidating his second place on combined times. Lorenzo Baldassarri (FLEXBOX HP 40) rocketed up to second in the closing stages of FP3, proving he has strong pace and going to fourth on combined times, with teammate Augusto Fernandez finishing third in the session and sixth overall.

Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) was fourth in the session, confirming his top five pace from Friday to finish fifth overall ahead of qualifying. Completing the top five in FP3 was Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team), who set a personal best time to place 11th overall. Fabio Di Giannantonio (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) was only 14th in the session, but led the way into qualifying, remaining on top on combined times.

With more rain due in the afternoon, it could well be an eventful Moto2™ qualifying session, with no rider on the grid experiencing the new Moto2™ machinery in the wet at Brno before.

1. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Beta Tools Speed Up) 2:01.695
2. Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.035
3. Tetsuta Nagashima (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) + 0.063
4. Lorenzo Baldassarri (FLEXBOX HP 40) + 0.096
5. Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) + 0.190
6. Augusto Fernandez (FLEXBOX HP 40) + 0.191
7. Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP) + 0.207
8. Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) + 0.268
9. Jorge Navarro (Beta Tools Speed Up) + 0.278
10. Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) + 0.283

For full results of combined times from Moto2™, click here!

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