Second row for Redding after busy qualifying at Misano
Scott Redding missed out on a front row start for only the fourth time this season, after running into heavy traffic during qualifying for the San Marino Moto2 Grand Prix this afternoon. With slower riders baulking him on every flying lap, the current Moto2 World Championship leader could qualify no better than fifth and will start tomorrow from the second row of the grid.
Redding went into qualifying this afternoon confident of securing a place on the front row for tomorrow’s race. But with large groups of riders cruising just metres from the racing line, the 20-year-old Briton was denied the clear track he needed to further improve his time, leaving him fifth on the timesheet at the end of the session.
For Mika Kallio tomorrow’s San Marino Moto2 Grand Prix promises to be a tough race, after mechanical issues saw him finish 15th in qualifying at Misano. The 30-year-old Finn has suffered a catalogue of problems this weekend, but the excessive vibration that stopped him from pushing for a better grid position this afternoon was not something he’d previously experienced in the three free practice sessions.
Livio Loi will start tomorrow’s San Marino Moto3 Grand Prix from 23rd position on the grid, after improving his previous best lap time by more than half a second in this afternoon’s 40-minute qualifying session.
The 16-year-old Belgian once again struggled with confidence in the front end of the bike during this morning’s final free practice session, but threw caution to the wind on his final qualifying lap, after finding a fast wheel in the form of championship leader, Luis Salom, right at the end of the session. Loi heads into tomorrow’s race determined to try and fight his way through to a points scoring finish.
Scott Redding #45: 5th – 1’38.210
“Qualifying was just chaos. There were riders everywhere, in the most dangerous parts of the track, just waiting. Seven or eight guys waiting on the racing line, waiting on the fastest corner on the track, on every one of my flying laps. There was just no way for me to put a lap together. It’s frustrating but, more than anything else, it’s dangerous. We need to find some consistency tomorrow in warm up. If we can do that then we’ll be in good shape for the race.”
Mika Kallio #36: 15th – 1’38.891
“So far, this just hasn’t been my weekend. Yesterday issues with the rear shock mount cost me a session, this morning the rear tyre span on the rim and this afternoon the bike started vibrating braking into the corners. It felt like it was starting at the rear and then being transmitted to the front, getting worse after six or seven laps, to the point where I just couldn’t push any more without crashing. We suspect that a recently upgraded clutch may be the cause, but until we go into it in more detail tonight, it’s difficult to say. I’m confident we’ll get it fixed, but tomorrow’s race is still going to be tough starting from 16th on the grid.”
Livio Loi #11: 23rd – 1’44.732
“In all three free practice sessions I didn’t have a good feeling with the front, mainly on corner entry, where I just didn’t have the confidence in the front tyre to push hard. We made some changes ahead of qualifying that gave a small improvement, but I still wasn’t completely comfortable. When I found myself behind Luis Salom at the end of the session I decided to just go for it and try and stay with him. It meant I had to push over what I thought was the limit, only to find that there was more to come from the bike. I learnt an important lesson today; when you think you’re on the limit and there’s still a two second gap to the front, you need to open the gas earlier and harder!”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“I know Scott is frustrated with the problems he encountered in qualifying with the traffic, but fifth on the grid isn’t the end of the world. We need to find a little more from the bike, just to shorten the gap to the front three, but he’ll be up there fighting for a podium in the race, of that I’m certain. Mika seems to have had as much bad luck this weekend as most riders have in one season. It means he’ll start from a less than ideal position tomorrow, but some of his best races this season have come from the same place on the grid, so I expect it won’t take him long to fight his way to more points. After struggling a little in free practice, Livio bounced back to finish just two seconds off pole position, which is where we expect him to be at this point. His goal tomorrow is to lead his group across the line, just as he did at Silverstone.”