Dalla Porta, Nagashima and Morales, quickest on Saturday in Portimao
Lorenzo Dalla Porta (ITA-Husqvarna) in Moto3™, Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN-Kalex) in Moto2™ and Carmelo Morales (SPA-Yamaha) in Superbike were the fastest riders in qualifying sessions and will head the starting grids of their respective categories in this weekend’s sixth round of the FIM CEV Repsol at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve.
Laglisse Academy rider Lorenzo Dalla Porta rider was hot favourite for the pole in the Moto3™ in Portimao and as expected dominated the first qualifying session to notch up his fifth pole of the season out of six in a time of 1’50.157.
Next to him on tomorrow’s grid will be Raúl Fernández (SPA-Husqvarna) who finished just 0.148 off the pole time, qualifying for the first time on the front line this season. Rory Skinner (GBR-FTR Honda), a rival of the Madrid rider in the Red Bull Rookies Cup, improved his time in the second qualifying session to post a 1’50.325 and will also make his debut on the front row of the grid this season.
Marcos Ramírez (SPA-KTM) will lead the second row of the grid. The Leopard Junior Stratos team rider, currently running second in the overall Moto3™ Junior World Championship standings, will start at the side of Kaito Toba (JPN-Honda), fifth in the standings, and Tony Arbolino (ITA-Honda), who achieved his first Moto3™ podium when he finished runner-up in the second race at Barcelona.
Several riders will not be racing on Sunday. Makar Yurchenko (USR-KTM) broke his fibula on Thursday during practice at the Portuguese circuit. Marc García (SPA-Honda), riding as a substitute in the Junior Team Estrella Galicia 0.0, was also injured in practice (breaking the fifth metacarpal of his right hand). Albert Arenas (SPA-Mahindra) broke his collarbone in last week’s HJC Helmets Grand Prix at Brno in the Czech Republic and has been replaced by Borja Sánchez (SPA-Mahindra). Alonso López (SPA-Honda) is currently disqualified.
This time round in the Moto3™ Production class, Hector Garzó (SPA-Honda) beat Aleix Viu (SPA-Honda) and starts tomorrow ahead of the Team Larresport rider, who missed the first qualifying session because of an engine failure.
In Moto2™, Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN-Kalex) improved on Steven Odendaal’s (RSA-Kalex) best lap in the first qualifying session to win his second pole position in a time of 1’45.602. The Japanese Ajo Motorsport Academy rider is doing his utmost to bring more excitement to the Moto2™ European Championship category.
If Steven Odendaal, who finished the qualifying session 0.262 behind the pole, wins both races in Portugal he will be proclaimed champion with only two races remaining. However, the AGR Team rider, who will ride as wild card in the Movistar Grand Prix of Aragón at MotorLand Aragón, said yesterday that he has set aside the idea of being crowned champion in the Algarve so that he can focus on the racing. The AGR Team has the presence of Karlos Arguiñano in Portimao this weekend to encourage their team.
Steven Odendaal and Alan Techer (FRA-NTS TPRO Project) will start alongside Tetsuta Nagashima in the two Moto2™ European Championship races this weekend. Ivo Paixao (POR-Kawasaki) was the fastest in Superstock 600 and the only rider to post a time under 1’49, with 1’48.972.
Carmelo Morales (SPA-Yamaha) underlined his dominance with his fourth consecutive pole of the season. The Yamaha Laglisse rider arrived at Portimao full of confidence after beating Maximilian Scheib (CHI-BMW) in Albacete to take the leadership of the Superbike European Championship. The Targobank Easyrace SBK Team rider finished second in qualifying ahead of Alejandro Medina (SPA-Yamaha).
Right behind the Leopard Yamaha Stratos rider came David Mcfadden (RSA-Kawasaki), who is taking part in the Portuguese round with Team Tack. And just as in the Superstock 600 class, a Portuguese rider was the fastest among the Privateers: Tiago Magalhaes (POR-Kawasaki), fifth overall in Superbike and quickest Privateer rider.
Sunday’s race schedule is as follows:
Superbike (17 laps): 11.00h
Moto2™ (17 laps): 12.00h
Moto3™ (16 laps): 13.00h
Superbike (17 laps): 14.00h
Moto2™ (17 laps): 15.00h
Access to the public areas will be free over the weekend. However, access to the paddock (and to take part in the Pit Lane walk on Sunday) will require a paddock pass. The meeting point will be at the end of boxes between 10.10h and 10.20h.
In Spain, the races can be viewed live on the Movistar MotoGP channel which will broadcast all the races scheduled in the Moto3™ Junior World Championship, Moto2™ European Championship and Superbike European Championship categories. BT Sports (Great Britain), Sport TV (Portugal) and Eurosport via Eurosportplayer (France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands) also offer coverage of the Moto3™ Junior World Championship, Moto2™ European Championship and Superbike European Championship with live broadcasts of each of the races through their digital network. In Italy, Sky will broadcast live the Moto3™ Junior World Championship race and both the Moto2™ European Championship races.
In addition, all the races can be seen live on the Championship’s Youtube channel.
All the results and information about the Championship are on the official website: www.fimcevrepsol.com