Márquez out of luck in Phillip Island qualifying
Phillip Island, Australia – 17 October 2015: Luck wasn’t on the side of Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Álex Márquez this afternoon, after an early technical issue left him down in 18th position at the conclusion of Moto2 qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix.
The 19-year-old was optimistic of a top 10-grid position after he’d finished this morning’s FP3 in a promising seventh position at the spectacular Phillip Island track.
But a technical glitch with his clutch meant the Spanish rider had to spend the first 16 minutes of qualifying waiting patiently while his fast acting crew firstly diagnosed and then rectified the issue.
Once out on track, Marquez found it difficult to establish a fast rhythm, as he struggled for stability in the fast and sweeping sections of Phillip Island’s technically challenging layout.
He now plans major set-up changes in tomorrow’s 20-minute warm-up session to improve his confidence in advance of the 25-lap battle.
Just as he was in Japan last weekend, Márquez will be the lone entry from Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS in tomorrow’s race, with Tito Rabat unable to ride today after a heavy crash in FP2.
Álex Márquez: 18th – 1’33.755
“We have had a lot of problems during the weekend and then right at the start of qualifying there was an issue with the clutch. Luck has definitely not been on our side but we need a big change with the set-up of the bike because what we have done so far hasn’t worked. It is close to impossible for me to ride the bike with any confidence. We need to improve a lot for tomorrow because if we can’t then it will be a difficult race. I am fighting with the bike too much. I have a lot of movement and we have to try and make the bike more stable to help me be more competitive.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“We can’t hide from the fact that today’s qualifying was very tough and below our expectations. We had a clutch problem at the start of the session but Alex has been struggling to find a good rhythm. Based on what we have seen so far this weekend it is going to be a difficult race. We just haven’t improved enough to reach a better pace, so Alex and his crew will sit down tonight and closely analyse the data to see if we can find a setting that will allow him to battle for the top 10 tomorrow.”