Celestino Vietti Claims First Moto2 Pole
Celestino Vietti (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) benefitted from Sam Lowes’ (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) cancelled lap time to claim a maiden Moto2™ pole position at the Grand Prix of Qatar. The Italian set a late 1:59.082 to lead Tony Arbolino (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) by just over a tenth, as Lowes slips to third after exceeding track limits.
Late track limits drama decides pole
The early session table topper in the pole position battle was rookie Filip Salač (Gresini Racing Moto2™) from Cameron Beaubier (American Racing) and Tony Arbolino (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team), as Somkiat Chantra (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) suffered an early crash at Turn 5 – the Thai rider went to the medical centre for a check-up.
Double 2021 Lusail winner Lowes then leapt to P1 as the yellow flags were then shown for a Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) crash at the final corner. The reigning Moto3™ World Champion was all ok but his maiden Moto2™ qualifying session was over.
Jake Dixon (Inde GASGAS Aspar Team) set a time good enough for the front row but it was later chalked off for a yellow flag infringement, as compatriot Lowes increased his advantage at the summit. No one was able to beat Lowes’ time, Vietti went closest on his final flying lap, as late drama unfolded. Lowes’ lap was cancelled for exceeding track limits at Turn 15, which handed Vietti pole position.
Top 10 for the opening race
Rookie Salač put in a mightily impressive performance to front the second row of the grid in P4, the Czech rider has Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) and Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) for company on the second row. Dixon will launch from P7 alongside Fermin Aldeguer (MB Conveyors Speed Up) and Aron Canet (Flexbox HP40), with Acosta starting P10 for his first Moto2™ race after a final corner crash.
The Moto2™ race gets going at 16:20 local time (GMT+3)!
2022 Qatar Moto2 Top 10
1. Celestino Vietti (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) – 1:59.082
2. Tony Arbolino (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.112
3. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.144
4. Filip Salac (Gresini Racing Moto2™) + 0.205
5. Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) + 0.220
6. Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.257
7. Jake Dixon (Inde GASGAS Aspar Team) + 0.275
8. Fermin Aldeguer (MB Conveyors Speed Up) + 0.277
9. Aron Canet (Flexbox HP40) + 0.398
10. Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.446