17.10.2020

12th for Espargaro after tightly grouped MotorLand qualification

MotoGP 2020 - Round 10, Aragon (Spain)
Pol Espargaro KTM RC16 MotoGP 2020 Aragon

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Red Bull KTM will see Pol Espargaro push away from 12th position on the grid for the Gran Premio Michelin de Aragón and the tenth round of 2020 MotoGP™. The Spanish event is the second of three consecutive races for the series.

  • Pol Espargaro 12th after late Q2 qualifying ‘moment’ ruins fast attempt
  • Raul Fernandez takes fourth Moto3 Pole Position of the season
  • KTM RC4s lockout the Moto3 front row in Aragon
MotoGP moved to the open but challenging MotorLand Aragon circuit for the latest back-to-back episode of the 2020 season and the fourth round of ten to take place in Spain this year. A strong cold wind meant harsh conditions at the venue close to the ancient city of Alcañiz. The timetable for the entire Grand Prix was shifted an hour later than the original schedule to allow better temperatures from the autumn sunshine and ensure a safer range of operation for tires.
 
Pol Espargaro was the quickest Red Bull KTM rider after Free Practice and also qualification on Saturday. The Spaniard experimented with Michelin’s soft and medium compound rubber for the best grip and in consideration of the 23-lap distance on Sunday. The 29-year old was unlucky to see his flying lap ruined on the last corner due to a congested track and a blameless collision with another rider.
 
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing teammate Brad Binder was on the verge of squeezing through Q1 after making substantial progress with his pace and confidence. The South African MotoGP rookie was pushed out of the top two late into the session and misjudged his braking point into Turn 12 on his last fast attempt. Binder was 14th at the end of qualification.
 
Red Bull KTM Tech3 pair Iker Lecuona and Miguel Oliveira will be 15th and 18th on the grid. Lecuona actually improved his speed after a pair of tricky Free Practice sessions on Friday but Oliveira could not optimize his feeling and level of traction and will set-off from the sixth row.
 
Moto3 opens raceday on Sunday with the timing of 12.00 followed by Moto2 at 13.20 and then MotoGP at 15.00 CET.
 
Pol Espargaro: Today was going good until the qualifying. I took good time to set-up the session. I did not want to crash because the conditions were tricky and I wanted to do the fast lap in the second run. Everything was going very good until that last corner. It was a shame not to get on the second row. It should have been possible. We’ll need to check with Michelin and our technicians to see which will be our tire tomorrow but luckily we have quite a lot of info.”
 
Brad Binder: I think I can sleep a whole lot better tonight because we definitely made a good step forward. It was a bit disappointing not to get into the Q2 but at the same time I’m happy because we made good progress. My team did a great job to make me a lot more comfortable on the bike. I want to try and have a good look through the data tonight for those last few improvements for the race tomorrow.Today was a great day even if the result does not show how good I feel. I’m going to give it a good go tomorrow and I’m looking to get in that top ten.”
 
Iker Lecuona: In qualifying I tried to push as much as I could. In the end, I managed to do a 1:48.0, so it’s a very good lap time for me. Thanks to my team, they did a great job again and helped me a lot. We’ll see what we can achieve in tomorrow’s race.”
 
Miguel Oliveira: “It was a difficult Qualifying. I had difficulty to find traction on the track and in fact together with my team we tried many things to fix it, but unfortunately, it looks like our direction was not right. So, we will try again tomorrow and hope for a good race.”
 
Moto2 & Moto3
 
Red Bull KTM Ajo KTM’s Raul Fernandez blitzed the Moto3 Q2 session with his KTM RC4 to seal his fourth Pole Position of the season by less than a tenth of a second from fellow KTM rider Celestino Vietti; winner of the last Moto3 Grand Prix in France. Leader of the world championship standings, Albert Arenas, was 3rd and locks out the front row.
 
Raul Fernandez: “We achieved our main objective: to start on the front row. Tomorrow we have to finish the job with a good result, something for which we are working at every Grand Prix. We will try to make it a fast and clean race with a small group. We will push hard and give 100%."
 
In Moto2 Jorge Martin carried his Red Bull KTM Ajo machine to 8th in Q2 while teammate Tetsuta Nagashima took 14th.
 
In the fifth round of the 2020 Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup Pedro Acosta continued his remarkable unbeaten run by beating fellow Spaniard Daneil Holgado by less than a second at MotorLand. Acosta leads the championship by a massive 53 points over Holgado.
 
Races: October 18th, 2020 – Moto3 12.00 | MotoGP 13.20 | Moto2 15.00 CET
 
Results Qualifying MotoGP Gran Premio Michelin de Aragón
 
1. Fabio Quartararo (FRA) Yamaha 1:47.076
2. Maverick Viñales (ESP) Yamaha +0.046
3. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) Honda +0.229
4. Franco Morbidelli (ITA) Yamaha +0.241
5. Jack Miller (AUS) Ducati +0.337
12. Pol Espargaro (ESP) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +1.126
14. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM Factory Racing (Q1) 1:47.853
15. Iker Lecuona (ESP) Red Bull KTM Tech3 (Q1) 1:48.005
18. Miguel Oliveira (POR) Red Bull KTM Tech3 (Q1) 1:48.431
 
Results Qualifying Moto2 Gran Premio Michelin de Aragón
 
1. Sam Lowes (GBR) 1:51.651
2. Marco Bezzecchi (ITA) +0.148
3. Fabio Di Giannantonio (ITA) +0.219
8. Jorge Martin (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo +0.584
14. Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN) Red Bull KTM Ajo +1.078
 
Results Qualifying Moto3 Gran Premio Michelin de Aragón
 
1. Raul Fernandez (ESP) Red Bull KTM Ajo 1:57.681
2. Celestino Vietti (ITA) KTM +0.059
3. Albert Arenas (ESP) KTM +0.510
 
Contact:
Press & PR Manager
Sebastian Kuhn
+43 676 599 0084

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