Dixon and Vierge encounter bad luck in Austrian GP qualifying2020-08-17 01:13
Jake Dixon and Xavi Vierge were both subject to ill-fortune in today’s Moto2 qualifying session at the Grand Prix von Österreich. Despite showing good form in Friday’s Free Practice sessions, the PETRONAS Sprinta Racing pair were unable to capitalise on their Q2 places and will start tomorrow’s race from 15th and 16th respectively.
Despite Dixon’s strong lap time yesterday, his place in the second qualifying session was in jeopardy as the times tumbled. With the top-23 riders covered by only a second, the Brit dug deep and ended the session with the final place in the automatic promotion zone, after setting a 1min 29.342 lap time – just 0.465secs shy than the top placed rider. Jake looked set to have a great qualifying session and was lapping just outside of the top-nine for the majority of the 15 minutes. Unfortunately, he had two lap times removed for exceeding track limits and for a yellow flag infringement. Despite this Jake was able to set a 1min 29.357secs lap, which saw him finish the session 15th.
A close FP3 session saw Vierge knocked out of Q2 contention during the session, as times started to improve upon those set yesterday. The Spaniard had a series of laps disallowed for exceeding track limits, before he was able to set a 1min 29.155secs lap, which saw him finish the session 7th and head straight into Q2. At the beginning of the second Moto2 qualifying session Xavi was quick to get in some initial laps around the 4.3km Austrian circuit. With such fine margins separating the riders it was always going to be difficult to be within the first couple of rows. As quicker lap times started to be set in the closing stages, Xavi unfortunately ended up in the gravel on his final flying lap, bringing his qualifying to a slightly early end. He will start tomorrow’s race from 16th after setting a best time of 1min 29.388secs.
Jake and Xavi will be out on track tomorrow at 9.10am local time (3.10pm MYT) for their Warm Up session, with the 25-lap Moto2 race due to begin at 12.20pm local time (6.20pm MYT).
This morning I pretty much matched my times from yesterday; I just wasn’t able to improve it. It wasn’t an ideal result today, but I think my race pace is better than my one-lap pace at the moment. Yesterday I felt really good on the flying lap, but not so good for in the race. We’ve actually seen a reversal of that today! 15th isn’t the end of the world and our target is actually to be around that anyway; it has been from the beginning of the year. I think in the future we can be running at the front but we still have things to learn before we can do that, it’s still only my first year on a Kalex. I think we can have a really good race tomorrow, especially after the disappointment in Brno.
Source: SIC Racing Team
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