Romano Fenati claimed his third Moto3 pole position of 2021 for the Max Racing Husqvarna squad with a last second 1’41.756 effort ahead of the San Marino GP
Leopard’s Dennis Foggia looked to be on for success at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli after Avintia’s Niccolò Antonelli came achingly close with his penultimate lap, falling seven-thousandths of a second shy of the target time. But the honours went to the Sterilgarda man as the chequered flag came out.
Moto3 qualifying got underway without a number of it’s big hitters, Gabriel Rodrigo ruled out with a fractured left humorous with Deniz Öncü and Alberta Surra sitting out of the rest of Saturday action - the Turk hoping to be declared fit ahead of Sunday’s race.
John McPhee led the way as his somewhat challenging return to the lightweight class continued, the Scot suffering a second fall of the day this time at turn nine, with his 1’43.351 potential his fastest effort with seven minutes to go.
Tatsuki Suzuki became the second former race winner at the Italian circuit out of contention with a front end slide at turn 13. The SIC58 rider failing to set a time before his crash.
Matteo Bertelle was the next to fall, the local wildcard sitting second to Carlos Tatay as the chequered flag prepared to fly. Riccardo Rossi and Ryusei Yamanaka securing the final promotion places with McPhee forced to settle for fifth - and 19th for Sunday’s 23-lap race. Further disappointment found recently announced Moto2 promotees Jeremy Alcoba and Filip Salac lining up at the back of the grid.
The 15 minute shootout was initially led by Foggia before Andrea Migno once again took charge with a 1’42.099 lap. The second Leopard of Xavi Artigas leapfrogging his newly re-signed teammate for second as Max Racing’s Romano Fenati fended off VR46 wildcard Elia Bartolini in the top five.
Pedro Acosta sat on the edge of the top six at the halfway stage, and heading a train of KTMs with Jaume Masia and Ayumu Sasaki sitting seventh and eighth. Darryn Binder and Bertelle completing the top 10.
Foggia was back in control in the closing stages before a late push by Antonelli found second. A twitch denying the Italian a home pole, just 0.007s shy of his countrymen with the flag flying. Fenati was the only rider to have crossed the line with time in hand, his breathtaking effort stealing the show by a quarter of a second for his third pole of the season.
Migno completed qualifying in fourth from Masia and Artigas, Rossi and Bartolini heading Acosta on row three with Tatay, Stefano Nepa and Sergio Garcia sitting 10th to 12th. Sasaki, Binder and Bertelle secured row four with Yamanaka, Izan Guevara and Kaito Toba completing the set.