The Moto2 qualifying session was as hectic as always, which was something of a surprise. Earlier in the weekend, the Moto2 field had been called into a meeting with race direction to discuss aggressive riding in qualifying. Judging from the reaction of the riders, it seemed to have little effect.
As always, it was crowded at the top with 15 riders on the first second and the next 24 on the next second. The best of them was Andrea Iannone (Fimmco Speed Up, Speed Up) for the third time in a row.
Iannone translated his previous two poles, in Mugello and Assen, into race wins and was hoping for more of the same this weekend. His pole time of 1m, 47.493s was an impressive .267s faster than the second best.
That honor went to Yuki Takahashi (Tech 3 Racing, Tech3), the Japanese rider who achieved a career best second in qualifying. For qualifying Takahashi had the benefit of a new Tech 3 frame, which the team built overnight. From his very first laps he was confident that he could have his best result, which he did, and he expects that confidence to carry over into the race.
Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Moriwaki Moto2, Moriwaki) rode with a broken collarbone to the third fastest time. The injury, which was suffered last week at Assen, wasn’t revealed until he had an operation to correct it during the week. The injury wasn’t a problem in qualifying, where he exceeded expectations. The bigger problem was slower riders, which he said were on the ideal line when he was trying for his fast lap.
Championship leader Toni Elias (Gresini Racing Moto2, Moriwaki) qualified with the fourth fastest time in his home race. Elias hails from nearby Manresa and he has the support of family and friends as he seeks his third win in of the season. After disappointing results in Mugello and Silverstone, he righted the ship and finished a fighting second in Assen. That gave him a 24 point championship lead after six races.
MOTO2 RIDER QUOTES
Andrea Iannone (Fimmco Speed Up, Speed Up: 1st – 1m, 47.493s) says: "Today was a really difficult today because it was very hot and I had problems with the tyres and the traction. I managed to be fast and I had a good pace, but it was not enough. After some modification on the tyres, I succeeded in doing the best time. Tomorrow I know it will be difficult to win the race, because many riders are pushing hard but I will try."
Yuki Takahashi (Tech 3 Racing, Tech 3: 2nd – 1m, 47.760s) says: "I am really satisfied because this is a result as much for my team as it is for me. I can’t praise Tech 3 Racing enough because they have all been working incredibly hard and it really paid off today. I think my crew were working on the new chassis until midnight, but immediately I had a lot more confidence to push. When I am doing a slow lap time I can’t feel so much difference, but when I go down to the 47s and 48s, the front feeling with the new chassis makes a huge difference. It has been a tough period after a good start to the season but I feel confident for the race. Obviously the heat will play a big role but I think we’ve got a good setting that will help the tyres last the race. Being second means there is only one rider to pass but Iannone will be strong, as we have seen recently. When he’s been on pole he’s won quite easily, so I hope to give him a tough time tomorrow. But I will certainly be aiming for my first podium which would be a fantastic reward for the whole Tech 3 Racing Team after the effort and hard work that has been put in."
Thomas Luthi (Interwetten Moriwaki Moto2, Moriwaki: 3rd – 1m, 47.973s) says: "The feeling is quite good. All over the weekend we had a good pace, for sure. I had a good pace in the beginning of the practice already and I knew that all the other guys were coming back and fighting for a faster time. And then on the end I had some trouble with guys that were waiting on the ideal line and it’s quite dangerous out there, so that takes the rhythm, so that’s why I could not make a faster time in the end. But I’m quite happy with the front row and let’s see what happens in the race tomorrow."
Toni Elias (Gresini Racing Moto2, Moriwaki: 4th 1m, 48.089s.) says: "I am happy because we start from the front row and we have a good pace for the race. The work we have done this weekend has been positive and if we get a good start tomorrow we have a chance of fighting for the win. Unfortunately in the qualifying session this afternoon we got held up by traffic and it seems to be something that is happening at every Grand Prix just now. I think we need to have a meeting and discuss how we can change this situation because it is difficult."
Pole position : 1m47.493s (158.309Km/h) Andrea Iannone, Fimmco Speed Up
Circuit Best Lap : 1m47.493s (158.309Km/h) Andrea Iannone, Fimmco Speed Up
1. Andrea Iannone 1m47.493s ITA HONDA Fimmco Speed Up
2. Yuki Takahashi +0.267s JAP HONDA Tech 3 Racing
3. Thomas Luthi +0.480s SWI HONDA Interwetten Moriwaki Moto2
4. Toni Elias +0.596s SPA HONDA Gresini Racing Moto2
5. Jules Cluzel +0.640s FRA HONDA Forward Racing
6. Carmelo Morales +0.671s SPA HONDA Tenerife 40 Pons
7. Shoya Tomizawa +0.699s JPN HONDA Technomag-CIP
8. Ratthapark Wilairot +0.731s THA HONDA Thai – Honda PTT Singha SAG Team
9. Kenny Noyes +0.798s USA HONDA Jack & Jones by A.Banderas
10. Roberto Rolfo +0.873s ITA HONDA Italtrans S.T.R.
11. Julian Simon +0.880s SPA HONDA Mapfre Aspar Team
12. Karel Abraham +0.945s CZE HONDA Cardion AB Motoracing
13. Simone Corsi +0.954s ITA HONDA JiR Moto2
14. Scott Redding +0.987s GBR HONDA Marc VDS Racing Team
15. Hector Faubel +0.998s SPA HONDA Marc VDS Racing Team
16. Dominique Aegerter +1.002s SWI HONDA Technomag-CIP
17. Fonsi Nieto +1.070s SPA HONDA G22 Holiday Gym
18. Sergio Gadea +1.078s SPA HONDA Tenerife 40 Pons
19. Arne Tode +1.094s GER HONDA Racing Team Germany
20. Alex Debon +1.120s SPA HONDA Aeroport de Castello – Ajo
21. Mike De Meglio +1.127s FRA HONDA Mapfre Aspar Team
22. Raffaele De Rosa +1.128s ITA HONDA Tech 3 Racing
23. Yonny Hernandez +1.147s COL HONDA Blusens-STX
24. Lukas Pesek +1.184s CZE HONDA Matteoni C.P. Racing
25. Jordi Torres +1.252s SPA HONDA MR Griful
26. Alex Baldolini +1.310s ITA HONDA Caretta Technology Race Dept
27. Ricard Cardus +1.314s SPA HONDA Viessman Kiefer Racing
28. Dani Rivas +1.395s SPA HONDA MR Griful
29. Anthony West +1.435s AUS HONDA MZ Racing
30. Alex De Angelis +1.449s SMR HONDA RSM Team Scot
31. Vladimir Ivanov +1.543s RUS HONDA Gresini Racing Moto2
32. Gabor Talmacsi +1.554s HUN HONDA Fimmco Speed Up
33. Niccolo Canepa +1.638s ITA HONDA RSM Team Scot
34. Xavier Simeon +1.676s BEL HONDA G22 Holiday Gym
35. Bernat Martinez +1.695s SPA HONDA Maquinza-SAG Team
36. Yusuke Teshima +1.716s JPN HONDA JiR Moto2
37. Claudio Corti +1.779s ITA HONDA Forward Racing
38. Joan Olive +1.821s SPA HONDA Jack & Jones by A.Banderas
39. Valentin Debise +1.946s FRA HONDA WTR San Marino Team