Remarkable Rabat takes pole for Moto2 farewell

Remarkable Rabat takes pole for Moto2 farewell

Valencia, Spain – 7 November 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Tito Rabat will start his final Moto2 World Championship race from pole position after a masterful qualifying performance in Valencia this afternoon. 

Back to full strength after his recent left arm injury that ruled him out of the three flyaway races in Japan, Australia and Malaysia, the 26-year-old delivered a breathtaking lap of 1.35.234 to secure the 16th pole position of his career by well over a tenth-of-a-second.

Today’s exceptional qualifying performance gives Rabat the perfect platform to try and bow out of Moto2 from the top step of the podium tomorrow, with the season finale taking place in front of a sell out crowd of over 100,000 fans at the Ricardo Tormo Circuit.

A third crash of the weekend in the 45-minute qualifying session prevented Álex Márquez from improving on the 14th place he secured at the end of this morning’s third practice session.

The 19-year-old fell heavily at turn 12 for the second time this weekend and a best lap of 1.36.272 puts him in the middle of the fifth row of the grid for tomorrow’s 27-lap race.

Tito Rabat: 1st – 1’35.234
“I am super-happy to have taken this pole position in my final Moto2 race. All the hard work to recover from my arm injury has paid off and I have to say a big thanks to my team as well because they have done a great job in giving me a bike that allows me to push to the limit with a lot of confidence. I can now look forward to the race knowing I have a great opportunity to finish my Moto2 career with a victory. It will be tough but I look forward to the challenge and hope this chapter in my career ends on a high note.”

Álex Márquez: 14th – 1’36.166
“This morning wasn’t too bad despite the crash and I started qualifying confident I could challenge for the top 10 and improve. The second crash at turn 12 was strange and honestly I am struggling to understand why I fell. It was a crash I didn’t expect at all and after that I couldn’t improve because I didn’t have the best feeling on the bike. The warm-up is going to be very important to try and recover a good feeling and then make a good race to end my first Moto2 season in a positive fashion.”

Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“What else can you say about Tito? I could never have believed it was possible for him to return and take pole position here but you can never underestimate his drive and determination. He has been off the bike for quite some time now but it looked like he’s never been away. He might not be World Champion anymore, but today he produced the performance of a true champion and he is already the hero of the weekend. It is a shame that Alex crashed in qualifying because I don’t think he has been able to show what he is capable of. Tomorrow morning will be crucial to help him recover some confidence but I think the top 10 is well within his grasp.”