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Argentina MotoGP: Moto2: Rabat takes hat trick of pole positions

Tito Rabat sped to pole position ahead of the first ever Moto2 Grand Prix of Argentina at the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit in a red-flagged qualifying session.
Esteve 'Tito' Rabat continued his perfect run of 2014 pole positions during Moto2's inaugural qualifying session at the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit.

The Marc VDS rider posted the fastest time around the Argentinian track of 1m 43.961s. However the Kalex man only moved into the top slot when action resumed following the red-flag for Sam Lowes crash.

Lowes' Speed Up bike span out from underneath him leading to a red flag while the debris and dust was cleaned away. He hopped back to the garage from his bike and immediately rested his foot on a stool.

The British rookie said that during the crash he had been pierced through his leathers by his foot peg. Despite this he was 1.2 seconds off the pace and set his fastest lap on his last on old tyres, taking 22nd on the grid.

Johann Zarco had lead the way before the break and resumed with some fast laps and was the first rider to go under the 1m44s benchmark. The Caterham rider held his lead for most of the session only to lose out to a flying Rabat late on.

Zarco starts second, with the final front row spot going to fellow Suter rider, Gresini's Xavier Simeon, who put together a string of fast laps while riding solo in the closing minutes.

The Belgian's effort demoted top rookie Maverick Vinales from the front row, though he still secures his best Moto2 qualifying. The Moto3 champion not only won in Austin but set the fastest lap during both of the previous races.

The second row is filled by rookie riders putting in strong performances in their debut Moto2 season.

Jonas Folger had been the man in form over the practice sessions, but had to settle for fifth for the AGR Team.

Completing the second row is Vinales Pons HP 40 team-mate, Luis Salom, in sixth.

In contrast some of the intermediate classes most senior riders fill row three.

A great flying lap at the chequered flag secured seventh for NGM Forward racing's Mattia Pasini ahead of his team-mate Simone Corsi in ninth. Sitting between the Italians on the grid is Tasca Racing's Alex De Angelis in eighth.

Japanese rider Taka Nakagami completes the top ten for Idemitsu Honda Team Asia.

Swiss rider Tom Luthi was an unusually distant 27th. Other big names also struggled to get to grips with the new track – Mika Kallio starts 14th, Domique Aegerter is 16th on the grid and Nico Terol is down in 25th.

Gino Rea struggled for grip and could only manage 28th, though hope remains for a good race after he powered past all the crashes in Austin from the back of the grid.

Argentina's most successful rider Sebastian Porto races this weekend as a wild-card.

The 35-year-old's last world championship race was back in 2006. The Former 250cc runner-up and race-winner re-appeared in the Spanish championship last year and qualified for his home race in 32nd.
by Lisa Lewis

Tagged as: moto2 , Rabat

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