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MotoGP Mugello: Second pole for Suzuki as red flags disrupt Moto3 shootout

SIC58’s Tatsuki Suzuki claimed his second pole of 2021 after fighting through from Q1 while a dramatic Moto3 qualifying ended in a red flag.

A similar battle saw Pedro Acosta rewarded with a front row start for Sunday’s ItalianGP, alongside Gabriel Rodrigo, with John McPhee lining up in ninth.

Qualifying got underway with Acosta fighting for a place in the ultimate shootout via the opening 15-minutes. Xavier Artigas, Ricardo Rossi, Niccolò Antonelli and Suzuki joining the 16-rider battle as Takuma Matsuyama became the first victim at turn 15.


Suzuki was in charge as the momentum increased for the final six minutes, Antonelli, Alberto Surra and Andi Farid Izdihar holding the important promotion places before Kaito Toba displaced him on the next lap.

Disaster struck Izan Guevara as contact with Rossi saw the two riders down at turn 10, the Aspar rider in obvious pain and needing assistance from the on track medical team.

The final minute allowed Acosta his one shot at Q2 after the KTM rider got tangled with a slow moving Artigas on his previous attempt. The lap initially took second, behind the improving Suzuki, before Toba claimed the position. Acosta settled for third, Antonelli fourth with a disappointed Surra missing out on his wildcard showing by just three-tenths of a second.

Artigas sat sixth ahead of Rossi, Izdihar and the second wildcard of Elia Bartolini, Lorenzo Fellon, Ryusei Yamanaka, Adrian Fernandez, Carlos Tatay and Max Kofler the final finishers with fallers Guevara and Matsuyama completing the standings.

The second session began in a subdued fashion as Acosta became the first solitary rider to head out on track after three empty minutes. The 10-minute mark witnessed the majority of the field finally depart, Andrea Migno the target of the waiting masses, with the first time eventually registering with seven to go. Migno immediately ducking back in to the pits, once again followed by half the field.

Rodrigo took provisional pole with a 1’56.685 with five minutes remaining, Jeremy Alcoba and Antonelli claiming front row places as Romano Fenati, Toba and Deniz Öncü held the top-six. McPhee, Acosta and Darryn Binder sat seventh to ninth as the only riders to so far set a time with just three minutes left on the clock.

Fenati improved to third on his next attempt, McPhee doing likewise for fifth shortly after, as the rest of the field’s times finally shuffled in.

Suzuki returned to the head of the standings with a 1’56.001 from Acosta and Rodrigo with Dennis Foggia taking fourth. Jaume Masia moved to fifth ahead of Alcoba as a dramatic accident for Jason Dupasquier, Ayumu Sasaki and Alcoba brought out the red flags in the dying seconds.

Fenati headed the third row with Antonelli and McPhee for company, Sasaki, Dupasquier and Toba finishing 10th to 12th respectively. Öncü led the way for row five ahead of Stefano Nepa and Sergio Garcia with a bitterly disappointed Binder, Migno and Filip Salac caught out and ending the session at the back of the pack.

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