Márquez obliterates circuit record for Malaysian pole
Alex Márquez broke his own official circuit record at Sepang twice on Saturday as he took his 6th pole position of the year while Xavi Vierge claimed an excellent 4th in qualifying.
- Both Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS team mates Alex Márquez and Xavi Vierge excelled in Saturday’s two dry sessions, which took place in ambient temperatures of 29 degrees and punishing 74% humidity.
- Márquez and Vierge took advantage of a dry track but had to contend with spots of rain falling on parts of the circuit in the opening minutes of Q2 as they expertly set their fastest times.
Alex Márquez, 1st, 2:05.244, 24 laps, 133 km.
- Alex began Saturday as he finished Friday: fast and consistent. In FP3 he was one of only two riders to break the outright circuit record with a brilliant time of 2’05.402. He ended the session in 2nd going directly to Q2.
- The Spaniard posted two brilliant runs in FP3 while working with a full tank of fuel. He did ten laps in the 2’06s and two in the 2’05s showing once again his race pace.
- Márquez claimed his sixth pole position of the year with his 2nd flying lap (2’05.244) in Q2. He will start the 18th race of 2019 ahead of Tetsuta Nagashima and Brad Binder.
“I think we can fight for the victory”
“That was important and tricky! The conditions were really difficult. At the beginning of Q2 it started raining a little bit so on the first lap I just tried to check the track out and my time was already a good one. Then on the second I saw some riders in front and thought, ‘OK, now I need to push.’ That was the key of this qualifying. I did a good lap. In terms of rhythm I think we made a step this morning. We have to be ready for everything tomorrow. All my rivals are so close and have good pace. I will try to get a good start, ride with intensity from the beginning and do our own pace. This weekend I feel freer on the bike and I’m enjoying it a lot. We’re still missing something but I think we can fight for the victory and we need to enjoy tomorrow.”
Xavi Vierge, 4th, 2:05.697, 22 laps, 122 km
- Continuing on from a strong Friday, Vierge posted two six-lap runs in FP3 as he perfected his settings for Sunday’s race while setting the 7th fastest time (2’05.798).
- Vierge was immediately fast in Q2, taking one lap to assess the difficult conditions before posting a 2’05.695 on his 2nd. That initially placed the 22-year old in 2nd with 7 minutes remaining. He eventually dropped to 4th.
- Still, 4th place is Vierge’s best qualifying performance since the Dutch Grand Prix in late June.
“I’m really happy with the second row”
“I’m really happy with the job done today. Already in FP3 we had good pace and we’ve prepared for the race tomorrow really well. Then in qualifying the conditions were difficult. It was raining a bit at the beginning. But thanks to the heat of the asphalt it was still like riding in the dry. It took a little time to understand that. My first two laps were really good but then everybody started to go faster and I couldn’t do any better. Anyway I’m really happy with the second row. Now we need to focus on doing a good warm-up to prepare for the race. I’ll try to enjoy it until the final laps.”