Johann Zarco took pole position for the Catalunya Grand Prix as the Moto2 class returned to action for the first time since Luis Salom’s tragic death in Friday practice. The atmosphere was understandably subdued with many riders carrying tributes to Salom on their machines but the action has continued at the wishes of Luis’ family.
The session started with more worrying scenes as a couple of riders suffered heavy crashes but thankfully, on this occasion, no-one sustained any injuries in their incidents. Franco Morbidelli was the luckiest, losing control of his Marc VDS Kalex twice with the second fall coming at the high speed Campsa corner. Danny Kent also came unstuck early on and the two riders will start in 18th and 21st respectively as a result of their issues.
The next rider to encounter trouble was championship leader Sam Lowes who lost the front end of his Gresini machine at Campsa twenty minutes from the end. The Briton was able to recover his bike back to the garage and get back out for a last-ditch effort but he was unable to manage better than fifth, leaving his title rivals to dispute the front row grid slots.
Zarco would ultimately come out on top on the Formula 1 layout in Barcelona, installed after yesterday’s tragedy. The Frenchman clocked a 1:49.179 to edge out Alex Rins by three hundredths of a second while Thomas Luthi, who sits between Rins and Zarco in third in the championship, will start alongside in third while Takaaki Nakagami lines up ahead of Lowes in fourth.
Axel Pons starts sixth ahead of Alex Marquez and Lorenzo Baldassarri while German duo Marcel Schrotter and Sandro Cortese complete the top ten.
Moto2 Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya (Qualifying Classification)
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