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MotoGP Austria: Moto3 pole for Fenati and Max Racing

Sterilgarda Max Racing’s Romano Fenati secured pole position for the AustrianGP Moto3 battle on Saturday as Gabriel Rodrigo skittled out Tatsuki Suzuki.

The SIC58 rider had left the way in the early session with an impressive 1’35.921 before the Italian bettered in the closing stages. Jeremy Alcoba completed the front row for Sunday’s 23-lap race.

Moto3 qualifying began without Ryusei Yamanaka after the CarXpert PruestelGP rider sustained a fractured left humerus in the opening minutes of FP3 following a turn three collision with Rodrigo.


The first 15-minute session saw Lorenzo Fellon led the way with a 1’36.784, Carlos Tatay, Andi Izdihar and Kaito Toba collecting the initial top-four spots before the SIC58 rider’s time was deleted and he was forced to push again. He did, finding fourth with his second effort as Tatay improved next time around to head the pace on a 1’36.472.

David Salvador, Andrea Migno and Adrian Fernandez held the remaining all-important Q2 spots with five minutes of action in play, BOE Owlride’s Stefano Nepa and Ricardo Rossi just adrift in fifth and sixth.

Toba launched an attack with four to go, claiming second as Nepa did the same for fourth. Migno forced to regroup if he wanted that promotion, while his Snipers team egged him on with multiple  dashboard messages.

A turn one highside left Fernandez down and out, with the Spaniard collecting his Husqvarna from the end of pitlane exit. A number of riders slowing on the racing line as they looked for the last lap tow.

Rossi claiming the top spot as the chequered flag came out, Tatay, Nepa and Toba completing the set as Migno floundered in seventh - having dragged the Owlride pair into contention - three-tenths off the ultimate pace.

The second session got off the blocks with Suzuki at the head of proceedings, Rodrigo sitting second - while news of his a pitlane start for his part in Yamanaka’s crash came through. The Argentinean was at it again at the halfway stage, however, as he wiped out Suzuki at turn nine with as many minutes remaining.

There was further on track tussles as Deniz Öncü had a moment in the middle of the group, the Tech3 rider sitting sixth directly behind teammate Ayumu Sasaki with Dennis Foggia running fourth as Pedro Acosta swooped in to second.

The KTM advance continued as Jaume Masia rose to fourth, recent promotee Nepa making his way up to sixth as the Petronas riders seemed to struggle in 15th and 17th.  

Fenati was the next to strike, hitting the top with a 1’35.850 - just 0.071s ahead of the SIC58 rider - as the clock struck two to go. Sasaki bettered the KTM rookie as he moved up to third, before Jeremy Alcoba, Masia and Öncü dropped him to sixth.


Acosta took seventh from Rodrigo and Foggia with Nepa completing the top-10. Izan Guevara settled for 11th ahead of Rossi, Toba and Garcia with McPhee 15th. Tatay, Filip Salac and Darryn Binder completing the 18 qualifiers and lining up on the sixth row for Sunday’s race.

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