Rabat close to pole position in Texas
Austin, Texas – 11 April 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Tito Rabat will start tomorrow’s Moto2 race at the Circuit of the Americas from the front row of the grid after missing out on a 14th career pole position by just 0.189s.
The reigning World Champion qualified third fastest after making big progress with finding more front-end confidence with his Kalex machine around the technically challenging 5.513km circuit close to Austin.
A lack of front-end feeling was the main issue for Alex Marquez in two 45-minute sessions that were run in dry conditions, despite the constant threat of rain looming over the Circuit of the Americas.
The reigning Moto2 World Champion finished 23rd fastest and escaped unhurt from a front-end crash at turn six in a close qualifying session that ended with Marquez less than a second off eighth position.
Tito Rabat: 3rd – 2’10.077
“I am happy to be on the front row because we made really good progress with getting more front-end feeling from the 2015 Kalex chassis. It now feels much more like what I am used to from last season, and this is very positive. It looks like the race tomorrow could be run in the wet conditions, and I was fast in those conditions yesterday, so I am confident of fighting for the podium regardless of the weather.”
Alex Marquez: 23rd – 2’11.661
“Today was difficult because we couldn’t really find a way to improve my feeling on the bike, particularly with the front. I can’t push at the limit and when I do I crash. I’m also working on my riding style but I don’t have the feeling with the front I need. To be honest a wet race tomorrow is better for me. In the wet yesterday I was comfortable and fast, and that gives me the best chance of a positive result.”
Pete Benson: Crew Chief, Tito Rabat
“For Tito to be on the front row is really good because it shows we have finally got on top of some of the front feeling issues he had so far this year. He showed once again a really fast and consistent rhythm in qualifying and if we could have improved in the final sector then I’m sure he’d have been even closer to pole position. Today was supposed to be wet and we got two dry sessions, so we need to wait and see what the conditions are like tomorrow. Tito has done a lot of work in the winter to improve his wet weather riding and in the worst of the conditions yesterday he was fourth, so wet or dry it looks good for him to be battling at the front.”