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Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) stole the show in Moto2™ qualifying at the Gran Premio Red Bull de España, the Spaniard set a 1:47.384 on his second flying lap to eventually beat Jorge Navarro (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) to pole position by 0.181 seconds. On his return from injury, Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) claims P3 and a front row start in Jerez.
Martin was straight out the traps in Q2 to almost immediately got down to the low 1:41s with that eventual pole position time on his second flying lap. It wasn’t such a good start for Q1 graduate Fabio Di Giannantonio (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) as the Italian tucked the front at Turn 2, with his bike then catching fire in the gravel. Meanwhile, Lowes was going quickly and soon found himself as Martin’s closest competitor – but the gap was over three tenths.
The SKY Racing Team VR46 bikes of Luca Marini and Marco Bezzecchi were working in tandem to try and reel in Martin’s advantage and despite the duo continually slamming in personal bests, that three-tenth gap couldn’t be eaten into though. It looked like the chance for the riders to have a niggle at Martin’s time wasn’t going to come with the temperatures rising all the time, but Navarro was then looking good on a personal best. The polesitter from 2019 couldn’t quite repeat his feat in 2020 though, but he did displace Lowes from P2 to go 0.181 off Martin.
Lowes was another rider who also kept on improving his time, but the British rider’s position remained the same. Nevertheless, P3 for the number 22 is a great way to kick off his 2020 campaign after missing the Qatar GP – can he challenge for the win on Sunday? And talking of challenging for the win on Sunday, the SKY VR46 duo have looked stellar all weekend. Friday pacesetter Marini will lead teammate Bezzecchi off the line in P4 and P5, with rookie Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team Moto2) sitting just behind the two Italians on row 2.
Jerez lap record holder Marcel Schrötter (Liqui Moly Intact GP) couldn’t repeat his form in FP3 and will launch from the front of row 3, the German rider just 0.019 off the second row. Championship leader Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) finished half a second off teammate Martin and will aim to keep his advantage in the overall standings from P8. Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) came through Q1 to earn a top 10 in Moto2™ qualifying, the Spaniard will start P9 ahead of 2018 and 2019 Spanish GP race winner Lorenzo Baldassarri (FlexBox HP 40) – can the Italian repeat his feat from the previous two years?
Martin was untouchable in qualifying, but the race is a different story. There’s plenty of riders who are looking strong, but who can handle the heat best on Sunday at 12:20 local time (GMT+2)?
1. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) – 1:41.384
2. Jorge Navarro (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) + 0.181
3. Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) + 0.300
4. Luca Marini (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.323
5. Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.338
6. Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team Moto2) + 0.466
7. Marcel Schrötter (Liqui Moly Intact GP) + 0.485
8. Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.505
9. Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 0.595
10. Lorenzo Baldassarri (FlexBox HP 40) + 0.626
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