Red Bull KTM Ajo's Raul Fernandez remains the man to beat in Moto3™ after his fastest lap from Friday at the Michelin Aragon Grand Prix was enough to hold on to top spot heading into qualifying later this afternoon. The Spaniard went faster than Aron Canet's 2019 pole lap in FP2, with nobody able to close the gap to the home hero on Saturday morning meaning the 19-year-old is four tenths clear of Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) and Albert Arenas (Solunion Aspar Team Moto3) on the combined timesheets.
Turn 2 sees its first crash of the morning! ????@KaitoToba is thankfully back on his feet after this highside! ????#AragonGP ???? pic.twitter.com/MKP3zH7sWS— MotoGP™???? (@MotoGP) October 17, 2020
In fact, nobody inside the top six was able to improve on Friday afternoon's lap times with a late yellow flag forcing the cancellation of a handful of laps. Earlier in the session, Kaito Toba viciously whipped off his Red Bull KTM Ajo at Turn 2 in a horrible looking highside whilst trying to tag onto his teammate, with the Japanese rider needing a trip to the medical centre as a result. Then, with the chequered flag out, Max Kofler (CIP Green Power) suffered a similarly nasty highside at the same corner with the resultant yellow flags ruining a whole host of riders last gasp attempts to secure a Q2 place.
Most notably, Kömmerling Gresini Moto3's Gabriel Rodrigo cut Fernandez's advantage in half by jumping up to second on the timesheets, two tenths behind top spot, before the Argentinian had his lap chalked off. He dropped to 18th as a result, one spot behind Petronas Sprinta Racing's John McPhee, who also saw a lap good enough for the top 14 scrapped.
That could put paid to any last minute improvements! ????— MotoGP™???? (@MotoGP) October 17, 2020
Maximilian Kofler joins the Turn 2 highside club! ????#AragonGP ???? pic.twitter.com/g1e2DozU7P
That means the top six riders remain split by seven tenths with Fernandez, Fenati and Arenas followed by Darryn Binder (CIP Green Power), Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) and Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0). The only rider inside the top ten to improve in FP3 was Saturday morning's fastest man Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46), with the Italian jumping up from 17th on the combined timesheets to secure a place in Q2.
Taking the final spots inside the top ten were Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing), Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) and Celestino Vietti (SKY Racing Team VR46). Joining the above riders in Q2 after finding late improvements on Saturday morning are Jeremy Alcoba (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3), Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) and Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech3).
⏱️ @25RaulFernandez's Friday time remains unbeaten!— MotoGP™???? (@MotoGP) October 17, 2020
The @RedBull_KTM_Ajo rider stays ahead of FP3 pacesetter @gabrirodrigo2! ????#AragonGP ???? pic.twitter.com/UfGHBXs0iE
The lightweight class grid will be formed at the later time of 13:15 local time (GMT+2) for Q1, before fireworks are guaranteed in the battle for pole position in Aragon at 13:40 local time.
Combined top ten:
1. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) – 1:58.144
2. Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) + 0.438
3. Albert Arenas (Solunion Aspar Team Moto3) + 0.532
4. Darryn Binder (CIP Green Power) + 0.545
5. Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) + 0.619
6. Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) + 0.700
7. Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.736
8. Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing) + 0.828
9. Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) + 0.839
10. Celestino Vietti (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.879
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