Moto2: Vierge Takes Second Termas Pole

Qualifying for the Moto2 class for the second round of the World Championship in Argentina saw Xavi Vierge take pole position for Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS.

First, though, the fourteen fastest riders from free practice were joined by the four fastest riders from Q1, who were: Simone Corsi (Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2), Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team), Bo Bendsneyder (NTS RW Racing GP) and Andrea Locatelli (Italtrans Racing Team).

In contrast to the Moto3 session, which saw everyone waiting until the end to set their fast laps, the Moto2 Q2 was fairly regular, with everyone going out at the start, and lapping until the chequered flag.

Vierge’s pole lap was set early on, in the opening minutes of the session, and came as a surprise considering both his and Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS teammate Alex Marquez’ lack of pace throughout the weekend. However, they clearly found something ahead of qualifying, and now the #97 will be hoping it continued to work in the race on Sunday.

Marcel Schrötter 2nd for the 2019 Moto2 race, Termas, Argentina. Image courtesy of Dynavolt IntactGP

Marcel Schrotter (Dynavolt IntactGP) qualified second with a late lap to slot him into the middle of the front row. The German had spent most of the session in the first positions, but a late surge from several riders put that at risk, although the #23’s response was sufficient to have him at the head of the grid for the second time this season out of two.

Qatar was a disappointment for Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2), both in qualifying and in the race, but a lap late on – his final lap of the session, in fact – in Q2 saw him fire himself onto the front row of tomorrow’s grid in third place, a grid slot from which he will be aiming to fight for the podium.

Alex Marquez (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS) looked good for a front row start for much of the session, but that late lap from Lowes bumped him to fourth place. The Spaniard made good progress after a difficult Friday, and will be joined on row two by race one runner-up Tom Luthi (Dynavolt IntactGP) and Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Brad Binder.

Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) topped FP3 in the morning, and so was hotly tipped for a debut pole position, however he could manage only seventh place, and will be joined on row three tomorrow by the VR46 Rider Academy pair of Qatar winner Lorenzo Baldassarri (Flexbox HP 40) and Nicolo Bulega (Sky Racing Team VR46) who will be hoping to make it further than turn one on his second attempt at a Moto2 race.

Simone Corsi was a surprise in tenth after coming through Q1, whilst Jorge Navarro (Beta Speed Up) took eleventh place and Enea Bastianini will complete the fourth row on his second Moto2 start.

Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46) complained after Friday of struggling over one lap, and he will need to hope that his race pace is strong, coming from thirteenth on the grid. He will be joined on row five by Andrea Locatelli and Iker Lecuona (American Racing).

Bo Bendsneyder (NTS RW Racing GP) impressed on the NTS, out-qualifying reigning Moto3 World Champion Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) to start tomorrow’s race sixteenth. Martin’s fellow Moto3 graduate and 2018 teammate Fabio Di Giannantonio (Beta Speed Up) will complete the sixth row of the grid tomorrow, after being the slowest of the Q2 competitors.

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