As if we would ever forget, but Raul Fernandez provided a not so gentle reminder of his star quality in Misano by taking Moto2™ pole one week on from a scintillating win in Aragon, and less than two weeks after undergoing surgery in his right hand. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rider’s 1:36.264 saw him have a comfortable 0.351s cushion over Elf Marc VDS Racing duo Sam Lowes and Augusto Fernandez who will join the rookie on the front row.
Leaving it late
P1 had changed hands a number of times as the clock ticked down towards zero, Raul Fernandez and KTM Ajo teammate Remy Gardner trading fast laps with Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team) and Fabio Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2), but with four minutes remaining, it was Brit Lowes who had just fired himself to the top of the timesheets as he zeroed in on consecutive poles.
Shortly after, Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) tried to get in on the front row fun, but his effort was quickly knocked back by Gardner and Canet, with the Spaniard pulling off a brilliant save seconds after recording a personal best time. Then it was Augusto Fernandez’ turn to crash the party, slotting in just behind Lowes to make it a Marc VDS one-two as riders began to take the chequered flag.
The session wasn’t just over yet, with Raul Fernandez putting together the race’s fastest lap, lighting up the screen with red sectors as he obliterated what was the time to beat, and secured a fifth pole position of the season.
How will the rest of the grid shape up?
Gardner just misses out and will launch from the head of the second row, and the Championship leader will be joined by Canet and Navarro. Di Giannantonio left it late to post a PB lap, but he will line up ninth on the grid behind Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) and Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46), while Q1 graduate Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Italtrans Racing Team) completes the top 10.
The intermediate class will see lights out on Saturday at 12:20. Make sure you tune in to catch all the action then.
1. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) – 1:36.264
2. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.351
3. Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.524
4. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.597
5. Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team) + 0.605
6. Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) + 0.664
7. Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 0.664
8. Marco bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.757
9. Fabio Di Giannatonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) + 0.907
10. Lorenzo Dall Porta (Italtrans Racing Team) + 0.928