Lowes masters Motorland with record-breaking pole position
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS enjoyed a record-breaking Q2 session in Motorland Aragon today after Sam Lowes set a sensational new all-time lap record to claim pole position, with Augusto Fernandez ready to launch a strong race challenge from inside the top 10.
- Gloriously sunny and wind free weather enabled Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS to create history ahead of the 21-lap Motorland Aragon Moto2 clash after cold temperatures dominated day one.
- Lowes and Fernandez comfortably moved into Q2 and in a dramatic 15-minute session, the Briton became the fastest Moto2 rider to lap the 5.3km Motorland Aragon track and clinch his second pole position of 2020, while Spanish teammate Fernandez built on a confidence-boosting FP3 to qualify in ninth.
/// AUGUSTO FERNÁNDEZ: 9th, 1’52.348, 24 laps
- Today’s action commenced an hour later than scheduled to avoid the coolest temperatures of the day and by the time Fernandez ventured out on track shortly before midday, temperatures had reached 14 degrees, which was only two degrees cooler than yesterday’s hottest conditions.
- Fernandez passed a tough test of his pain threshold this morning when he brushed off the constant discomfort of arm pump to improve by the huge margin of almost 1.3s compared to yesterday.
- After finishing only 20th yesterday in cold and windy conditions, Fernandez rocketed up the rankings by 16 places to ease into Q2 with a best practice pace of 1’52.672.
- Ambient temperature was a weekend high of 20 degrees when Q2 commenced and Fernandez set his best lap of the weekend on his third lap and his 1’52.348 means he will start from the third row of the grid.
“I’m looking forward to a strong fight and a good race is possible”
“I’m satisfied with how today has gone because we recovered my good feeling after a difficult first day. We set-up the bike in a different way to try and help with the arm pump problems I’m experiencing and unfortunately the changes didn’t work as well as we anticipated. This morning I was able to get a positive feeling back and it was really good to go into Q2 because it meant I could rest the arm and do less laps. I’m happy with my lap time because with that pace last year I’d have been on the front row. But the level is so high this year I’m only on the third row. The important thing is I’ve recovered a good feeling with the bike and I’m confident we can make a good race tomorrow. Sam is looking very strong and the other guys on the front row also seem to be a step ahead of the rest. But anything is possible and the times are close, so I’m looking forward to a strong fight. We need to see how the arm will be over the race distance but I’m sure a good race is possible.”
/// SAM LOWES: 1st, 1’51.651, 20 laps
- Lowes instantly found speed in spectacular fashion this morning and a rapid lap of 1’52.243 was only 0.072s away from being the fastest time in a closely contested FP3.
- The Briton was fully fit and raring to attack for pole position in Q2 despite a late crash in the closing stages of FP3 at turn 14.
- The 30-year-old then produced arguably one of the best single laps of his career to fire in a pole-setting 1’51.651 that was 0.6s inside the 2019 all-time lap record held by former Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS star Alex Marquez.
- A second victory in seven days tomorrow for Lowes will make him the first British rider in the intermediate World Championship to have four podiums in four successive races since Rodney Gould in 1972.
“I’m thinking about trying to win the race”
“It’s fantastic to be on pole position today. Winning in France was great but to come here and back that result up with a strong showing so far is very pleasing. I felt good going into Q2 despite the small mistake I made this morning and it was good for me to repay the team with pole position. I love this track and it is one of my favourites and I am feeling good on the bike. We need to focus tomorrow and take the most points possible because that will be important for the World Championship. In my head now I’m thinking about trying to win the race and there aren’t so many races left, so if we can be really strong tomorrow it can be a big boost for the end of the year. I’m looking forward to it and it looks like it will be a very fast race. Maybe at the end only one or two guys will be left to battle it out and I feel like I can be one of them.”