Zarco Holds Off Luthi to Take Valencia Pole

Johann Zarco will start his final Moto2 Grand Prix from pole position after narrowly pipping Thomas Luthi in qualifying at Valencia. The two-time champion edged out Luthi by six thousandths of a second after a session-long battle with the Swiss well-placed to finish as championship runner-up with Alex Rins only fifth on the grid.

Rins had actually topped the timesheets in the opening exchanges but that was as good as it got for the Spaniard as Zarco edged ahead at the seven minute mark, becoming the first rider to break into the 1:34s. Moments later, the Frenchman improved to a 1:34.879 which ultimately proved to be the pole time but Luthi threw everything at his rival in the remaining half hour.

At this stage, the gap between the two stood at just 0.031s and Luthi would register several red sector times, indicating that he was on track to depose Zarco from pole position. The final sector would prove to be his nemesis though and with one minute to go, Thomas set a personal best of 1:34.885, falling agonisingly short of pole.

Franco Morbidelli also heads into tomorrow’s finale with a shot at second in the championship and the Marc VDS rider rounds out the front row having joined Zarco and Luthi in the 1:34s.  Mattia Pasini was unable to do the same but still edged out Rins for fourth while Julian Simon lines up sixth for what may prove to be his final Grand Prix.

British duo Sam Lowes and Danny Kent will start together on row three ahead of Takaaki Nakagami while Alex Marquez completes the top ten on the circuit he claimed Moto3 title glory two years ago.


Moto2 Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana (Qualifying Result)

PosRiderConstructorTeamBest Time
15. Johann ZarcoKalexAjo Motorsport1:34.879
212. Thomas LuthiKalexGarage Plus Interwetten1:34.885
321. Franco MorbidelliKalexEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:34.933
454. Mattia PasiniKalexItaltrans Racing Team1:35.152
540. Alex RinsKalexPaginas Amarillas HP 401:35.184
660. Julian SimonSpeed UpQMMF Racing Team1:35.222
722. Sam LowesKalexFederal Oil Gresini Moto21:35.237
852. Danny KentKalexLeopard Racing1:35.345
930. Takaaki NakagamiKalexIdemitsu Honda Team Asia1:35.365
1073. Alex MarquezKalexEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:35.368
1194. Jonas FolgerKalexDynavolt Intact GP1:35.403
1223. Marcel SchrotterKalexAGR Team1:35.495
1319. Xavier SimeonSpeed UpQMMF Racing Team1:35.517
1411. Sandro CorteseKalexDynavolt Intact GP1:35.607
1544. Miguel OliveiraKalexLeopard Racing1:35.650
1649. Axel PonsKalexAGR Team1:35.682
1787. Remy GardnerKalexTasca Racing Scuderia Moto21:35.747
1810. Luca MariniKalexForward Team1:35.756
1997. Xavi ViergeTech 3Tech 3 Racing1:35.797
2057. Edgar PonsKalexPaginas Amarillas HP 401:35.863
212. Jesko RaffinKalexsports-millions-EMWE-SAG1:35.923
2224. Simone CorsiSpeed UpSpeed Up1:35.993
237. Lorenzo BaldassarriKalexForward Team1:35.995
2455. Hafizh SyahrinKalexPetronas Raceline Malaysia1:36.012
2514. Ratthapark WilairotKalexIdemitsu Honda Team Asia1:36.045
2627. Iker LecuonaKalexCarXpert Interwetten1:36.278
2770. Robin MulhauserKalexCarXpert Interwetten1:36.309
2842. Federico FuligniKalexTeam Ciatti1:36.728
2932. Isaac VinalesTech 3Tech 3 Racing1:36.787
3016. Hugo ClereTransfiormersPromoto Sport1:40.531