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Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Raul Fernandez bagged his fourth pole position of the season at the Motul TT Assen thanks to a 1:36.356, a lap time good enough to fend off teammate and main title rival Remy Gardner by 0.186s. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) will start Sunday’s Moto2™ battle from the outside of the front row in third, the British rider 0.330s back from pole.
World Championship leader Gardner was the first rider to dip into the 1:36s bracket in Q2 to briefly lead the standings, but teammate Raul Fernandez quickly took the initiative. The rookie landed a 1:36.567 to beat Gardner by over three tenths, as Lowes and Q1 graduate Aron Canet (Aspar Team Moto2) placed provisional P2 and P3.
Having been demoted to P7, Gardner then came back out of the box with gritted teeth. The three-time 2021 winner returned to top spot but once again, Raul Fernandez struck back to go just 0.010s away from the all-time lap record. On his final flying lap, Augusto Fernandez snatched a front row away from teammate Lowes to cement his first front row start since the 2019 Japanese GP, however, a yellow flag infringement for Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing) sees the Spaniard demoted to P8.
Canet’s P4 is a fantastic result after finishing Free Practice in P21, and the same can be said for Hector Garzo (Flexbox HP40). Fifth for the Spaniard, from Q1 and P20 in Free Practice, sees him claim a best qualifying result since the 2020 Valencia GP. Rookie Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) starts sixth, yet another impressive result from the Japanese rider.
Jorge Navarro (+Ego Speed Up) was a late crasher but lines up seventh on the Assen grid, just 0.460s splits the fastest seven riders in Q2. Augusto Fernandez will be more determined than ever to try and fight for the podium having had his lap cancelled, the Spaniard is eighth ahead of Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Italtrans Racing Team) – his best Moto2™ qualifying result – and Tony Arbolino (Liqui Moly Intact GP).
Tune into the Moto2™ Dutch TT at 12:20 local time (GMT+2).
1. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) – 1:36.356
2. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.186
3. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.330
4. Aron Canet (Aspar Team Moto2) + 0.409
5. Hector Garzo (Flexbox HP40) + 0.446
6. Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) + 0.448
7. Jorge Navarro (+Ego Speed Up) + 0.460
8. Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.528
9. Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Italtrans Racing Team) + 0.595
10. Tony Arbolino (Liqui Moly Intact GP) + 0.651
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