3 May 2014
Spain MotoGP: Moto2: Kallio maintains Marc VDS pole run
Marc VDS claim yet another Moto2 pole, this time courtesy of Mika Kallio who eased to pole position for the Grand Prix of Spain in the Jerez heat.
Marc VDS rider Mika Kallio will start on a Moto2 pole position for the first time this season as he prevailed in blistering qualifying session in Jerez defined by increasingly hot track conditions.
The 45 minute session got off to a speedy start with Mika Kallio putting in some early quick laps to set the pace for the session. After losing the lead to Cortese the Finnish rider let his bike cool down in the pits with fans focused on it and returned to improve - finishing with a best time of 1m 42.766s on just his eleventh lap.
Kallio's time could not be touched as the Tarmac heated up with nearest rival Sandro Cortese, who was fastest in free practice, holding on for second as improvements were hard to come by with a lack of grip. With championship leader Tito Rabat having taken pole at all the previous races his success means that a Marc VDS rider has claimed pole at every round so far this season.
The only rider to make a big move in the final minute was Luis Salom, moving up to third from fourteenth and finishing the session as top rookie with his best Moto2 qualifying performance to date.
Thomas Luthi just missed out on his first front row start of the season when Salom's late effort bumped him down to fourth for the Interwetten team, though it remains a big improvement on his season thus far for the Swiss rider as he ended the day as the top Suter rider.
Dominique Aegerter's qualifying looked more like a race run as he pushed on to for the Technomag carXpert team, his personal best good enough for fifth.
Rabat, meanwhile, had a new engine fitted to his Marc VDS bike in less than an hour ready for the Moto2 qualifying session after retiring to the pits and being forced to watch much of FP3 unfold. The Spaniard this time had to settle for fifth after his earlier problems, completing the second row.
Moto2 qualifying was a tight affair with the top eight all putting in times within half a second of Kallio's pole winning best. Rookies Jonas Folger and Maverick Vinales were next fastest in seventh and eighth respectively, with the final spot on row three was taken by Tech 3 rider Marcel Schrotter with a disgruntled Johann Zarco completing the top ten.
Zarco was so frustrated during the session he resorted to punching his bike. The Caterham rider is still in search of his first points finish with more penalty points this season than championship points.
Podium finisher in Argentina Xavier Simeon finds himself down in twelfth on the grid this time out, illustrating the ups and downs of Moto2 for the Gresini team.
Ricky Cardus continued to make the best of his replacement ride at Tech3, dangling off and pushing hard on his way to 14th on the grid, while Sam Lowes, difficult to miss this in shocking pink for the Jerez round, finally reaches a track where he has some previous racing experience. He starts from 15th despite a late fall.
Riding for Caterham this weekend, in place of the injured Josh Herrin, regular World Supersport rider Ratthapark Wilairot was a respectable 17th on his return to the Moto2 category.
Jordi Torres crashed ten minutes into the session, as did Azlan Shah. The sole Aspar rider on track today after Terol injured himself in FP3, Torres his bike to the pits but ruined his qualification hopes. He eventually rejoined to work his way to 22nd.
Nico Terol missed the session after having scans for a suspected hip injury - a crash in FP3 left the Aspar rider limping away with the marshals help after being unable to put weight on his left side.
Gino Rea continues to persevere on the AGT REA Racing bike with a new swing arm and qualified in 27th an improvement in what is proving to be a difficult season for the Londoner.
Edgar Pons has a wild-card ride this weekend at the Pons HP 40 team, joining Vinales and Salom.
Pons currently leads the Spanish Moto2 championship after the first round after winning at Jerez. His first experience of the World Championship sees him start 34th and last.
Louis Rossi crashed his SAG Team bike in the closing minutes, but walked away unhurt. He is 21st on the grid.
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