Third row start for Julian Simon at Mugello
Things got close on Saturday afternoon in Moto2, as the hotly-contested category held its qualifying session for the Italian GP. Many riders were separated by less than a second, indicating that there will be another entertaining race tomorrow afternoon. At the end of the session slipstreaming and tailgating was the name of the game, in scenes reminiscent of 125cc. Italian Andrea Iannone starts from pole for his home race.
It was a strange day for the Mapfre Aspar riders, who did a great job in practice and then stumbled in qualifying. Julián and Mike were in the top ten in Free Practice, confident of a great afternoon which turned out to be anything but. Simón clocked various fast laps but lost valuable time in T4, something that he hopes to rectify in the race. A fall in Arrabbiata 2 left him uninjured but looking for solutions. He will take off from tenth in search of a podium finish.
10th Julián Simón 1.56.343 (16 laps): “I really haven’t got the result that I wanted, but at least I have got a good pace going and am ready to race –like at Le Mans. Today I was basically losing time in the final sector. The first three were good, but in T4 I was losing all the tenths of a second that I had earned at the beginning of the lap. The last corner is proving difficult for me to take on, so I will look for a solution in the warmup and try and be strong in the race. I hope to get a good start and latch on to the lead group. The riders were faster today than I thought they would be, so expect a close race tomorrow. Every Moto2 race up to now has been tough, so I will have to focus in order to not lose positions. I had a crash on the last lap today, from pushing too hard on the front, but I’ll be ready for the race.”