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MotoGP Le Mans: Lowes sets sights on podium for 100th Moto2 race

Britain’s Sam Lowes will start his 100th Moto2 race from the middle of the front row as he hunts down a milestone podium in tomorrow’s 25-lap French GP after qualifying in second position.

Le Mans welcomed uncharacteristically sunny weather for the second day of action at the historic circuit but the biting October chill kept conditions challenging as the final FP3 got underway.

A strong performance in the late-morning session allowed Lowes to instantly settle into a consistently fast pace, his best time of 1’36.856, less than a tenth shy of the final practice’s top three as he easily secured his Q2 promotion.


The mid-afternoon qualifying - running in the same time-slot as tomorrow’s delayed race - saw the Brit immediately return to his impressive rhythm, topping the leaderboard in the closing minutes with a 1’36.343 as he fought for pole before settling in second for his sixth front row start of the season so far.

His confidence clear to see, Lowes is hoping to continue his golden run of form by securing a third successive podium for just the second time in his career. A feat that will be made even more special if he can complete it this weekend, while marking a century of appearances in the mid-weight class.

“I’m very happy to be on the front row because the conditions have been difficult all weekend and it was important to show we are strong again and put ourselves in a good position to fight for the win," said Lowes.

“I made a small mistake on my last flying lap which meant I couldn’t improve but the front row is still very positive and I’m looking forward to the race.

"The team have done an amazing job all weekend and we found more rear feeling today that makes me confident for the race.

“My starts aren’t the best so I’m a bit up against it, I need to start on the front row to be at the front on the first laps! I’m definitely in the mix and fighting for this top-three in the championship and to do that you need to be every time in the front.

“This is a track that I really like and I felt good this morning. We kept the same tyre all session and the pace was quite good, also yesterday in the rain was not too bad so we’ll see what Sunday day brings in Le Mans, because it could be any weather but we’re in the mix.

“I feel really confident. The team are obviously doing a great job, giving me a good bike every week and I was even a bit smart at the end. I did a bit of a slow lap on the second-to-last lap so rather than push again I just left it because in these cold conditions, with the left side I thought it was a bit on the limit so I’m happy with the pace we did.

“I feel ready to race and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do tomorrow.”

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