Fernandez and Lowes ready to star in landmark Barcelona battle
A season best starting position of fourth for Augusto Fernandez and a top 10 grid slot for Sam Lowes means expectations are high going into the Elf Marc VDS Racing Team’s milestone 200th Grand Prix tomorrow in Catalunya.
- A windy but warm day of Moto2 action at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya started and finished in positive fashion for the Elf Marc VDS Racing Team, who were top three contenders in FP3 and Q2.
- With excellent race pace shown throughout the weekend, Fernandez and Lowes both have good reason to be optimistic for a podium challenge going into tomorrow’s 22-lap race, which is scheduled to start at 1430pm local time.
/// AUGUSTO FERNANDEZ: 4th, 1:43.501
- Fernandez set his stall out early in FP3 this morning with a blistering lap of 1:43.588 on just his third lap moving him to the top of the timesheets for over 30 minutes of the session.
- Third quickest overall in Free Practice, Fernandez showed constant improvement throughout a closely fought Q2 and his lap of 1:43.501 equalled his best qualifying result for the Elf Marc VDS Racing Team in fourth position.
“I’ve been fast and competitive in every session so far”
“I’m very happy to be on the second row. We’ve been so strong this weekend that the goal was to be on the front row, but we can’t be disappointed because I’ve been fast and competitive in every session so far. The pace in Q2 was incredibly fast and I gave my maximum. The important thing has been my consistency this weekend. I might not be as strong as some other guys on a fast lap, but this is my best qualifying result of the season and I’m looking forward to the race. It will be important to finish and make sure we capitalise on the positive performance so far this weekend. It is a big day for the Elf Marc VDS Racing Team, and I am determined to enjoy the experience and hopefully deliver a great result in their 200th race.”
/// SAM LOWES: 8th, 1’43.693
- Lowes was quickly into the 1’43 bracket again this morning before his progress was halted by a front-end crash at the revised turn 10.
- The Briton set his fastest lap of the weekend in Q2 and missed the second row by less than 0.1s, with Lowes in no doubt he has the speed in race trim to fight his way through into podium contention tomorrow.
“My speed for the race looks to be strong”
“It was a bad qualifying. We can’t deny that because eighth position is not where any of us expect to finish. It’s not a disaster either because it is one of my worst results in Q2 since coming into this team but I’m still in the top 10. When you look at it like that it is not that bad. I’ve had a good feeling on the bike all weekend, but it just wasn’t the same in Q2. We need to analyse why that was but my speed on worn tyres in the second half of the race tomorrow looks to be strong and we need to make a good start and stay in the group to score some decent points. I don’t ever need extra motivation, but it will be nice to have a good result for the team tomorrow.”