Migno inherits 1st pole as fastest Ono is demoted to 4th
Andrea Migno (Sky Racing Team VR46) will begin the Japanese GP from pole position at the Twin Ring Motegi for the first time in his career, as the Italian set the second fastest lap in the QP session behind home hero Hiroki Ono (Honda Team Asia). Ono has a 3-place penalty from FP1 for riding too slowly in sectors of the track, and will therefore begin his home GP from P4.
Freshly crowned Moto3™ World Champion Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was third fastest in the session and will line-up P2, after the South African topped FP3 on Saturday morning following two crashes on Friday – cementing his comeback in qualifying. Completing the front row after setting the fourth fastest lap will be Enea Bastianini (Gresini Racing Moto3), who gains an early advantage over rival Jorge Navarro (Estrella Galicia 0,0) in the fight over P2 in the Championship, as Navarro qualified down in eleventh.
Nicolo Bulega (Sky Racing Team VR46) will start fifth behind penalized Ono, ahead of new teammate Lorenzo Dalla Porta – who recovered from some tough sessions to line up on the second row as he gets to grips with full-time world level competition.
An incident in the final seconds saw Juanfran Guevara (RBA Racing) and Niccolo Antonelli (Ongetta-Rivacold) crash out, with Antonelli having set the seventh quickest laptime, and the Italian will begin the race just in front of Frenchman Fabio Quartararo (Leopard Racing).
Drive M7 SIC Racing Team’s Adam Norrodin put in a stunning session to finish P9 and get a top ten start, with Schedl GP Racing’s Philipp Oettl completing that top ten.
Moto3™ are the first to attack the Twin Ring Motegi at 11:00 local time (GMT +9), with Ono looking for home glory – and Navarro and Bastianini focused on the fight for second in the Championship as the three flyaways get underway.
Moto3™ Qualifying Results
1 – HIroki Ono (JPN) HONDA 1’56.443
2 – Andrea Migno (ITA) KTM + 0.086
3 – Brad Binder (RSA) KTM +0.216