The Moto2 session began with the Q1 riders on top having already had the chance to get to know the changing, drying track and find their lines. Pedro Acosta was the best of the rest.

Jake Dixon, who initially looked to be emulating his San Marino woes before pulling himself into Q2, saw his initial banker cancelled for exceeding track limits. From there the Inde GasGas Aspar rider made every second on track count.

In eighth with three minutes to go, the British rider stamped his authority on the session to top the timesheets, but was quickly displaced by Sergio Garcia.

Undeterred, Dixon bounced straight back, with a best of 2m 01.924 good enough to claim pole as the chequered flag waved.

That lap saw huge progress in the final sector - it began slowly as he needed to pass fellow countryman Sam Lowes on track, with the following sectors also grey.


Pedro Acosta made sure to be well placed for Sunday. 

San Marino race winner Acosta was initially equally accomplished on a brand new track, a regular at the top of the timesheets in the run up to qualifying, though he did not top any of the three sessions.

Not a fan of the wet, the championship leader held his own in the early stages of Q2 but improved as the track dried out to finish just 0.032s slower than Dixon for Red Bull KTM Ajo.

Q1 time helps Garcia to third

Moto2 was generally a more solo qualifying affair, unlike Moto3, with a tow attempt still the order of the day, even in the rain. The intermediate session instead saw riders leaving gaps between each other to chase and use as a marker for braking.

Nobody used that system better than Garcia. The Pons rider already had the extra track time from Q1 to inform his choices and spent much of his time chasing down Somkiat Chantra, one of very few riders to know their way around the Buddh circuit, to finsh third, once again the top rookie.

Coming through Q1 also helped Zonta van den Goorburgh. Having found the track limits there, he was immediatley fast in the second session, helping him to fourth.

Similarly after too coming through the first session, Darryn Binder moved on to fifth for Liqui Moly Intact GP Husqvarna, thanks to an faster last lap.

Alonso Lopez also found last second improvements, one of the last riders to take the chequered flag he moved up to sixth as he did so for Speed Up, the best of the Boscoscuro riders.

Tony Arbolino looked to have made a leap in progress between rounds, and the blank canvas of Buddh allowed him to top P2, showing the Italian was back in business, building on his fourth across the line in Misano.

Come the tricky conditions, the Elf Marc VDS rider was briefly second at the start of Q2, but soon faded back with a more cautious approach, finishing seventh.

A late push from Joe Roberts saw him snatch up eighth for Italtrans, with Chantra, who looked to be one to watch after P1 on Friday, ninth for Idemitsu Honda Team Asia.

Vietti took pole last time out on home soil, but as yet another rider making a late push, his last lap was a personal best, but only good enough for tenth for Fantic Racing.

Late arrival Lowes off the pace in twelfth

The last man to arrive at Buddh, Lowes began his track time full of jetlag after issues getting a visa. Not letting it stand in his way, the Elf Marc VDS rider has moved slowly forward every session while pushing enough to ensure he made the top 14 to go straight to Q2.

His earlier issues came home to roost as his limited time getting to know the track saw the #22 still in search of the right line for him as his rivals had found places to slice time from their runs. The push saw him in the way of Dixon and running up the penalty loop as he pushed hard. That lap saw him move up to seventh, but all the riders making late progress dropped the Marc VDS rider’s best to twelfth.

Ai Ogura had looked to be back on his way to his best with a fifth place finish last round after recovering from his early season injuries, but was nowhere in Moto2 qualifying, struggling to 15th for Honda Team Asia. 

Manuel Gonzalez (Correos Prepago Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team) is the lap record holder having gone fastest in the dry P3 but was yet another rider nowhere to be seen on the damp track, 16th at the end of qualifying.

What happened in Q1?

There were turn one falls for both van den Goorbergh and his Fieten Olie Racing team-mate Barry Baltus(13th). The latter was late in the session preventing any last second changes to the four progressing, so the duo moved on along with Sergio Garcia and Darryn Binder.

After sitting in a progression place for much of the session, Taiga Hada (Pertamina Mandalika SAG) missed out in fifth, with Aron Canet’s distant title hopes taking a bettering as he failed to move on in sixth in the session - 20th on the grid for the Pons rider who went out tentayively following his crash earlier.

He was not the only rider surprising by not moving to Q2. Fermin Aldeguer will be one place further back for GT Trevisan Speed Up, only just ahead of rookie Rory Skinner, who struggled to find a neat line on the American Racing bike, finishing eighth in the session.

Albert Arenas was worse for wear following his earlier offs so was fifteenth and last on the second Red Bull KTM Ajo entry.


Injuries and Replacements

Lukas Tulovic’s fall in P3 saw the red flag come out, he was treated on the kerb before being  declared conscious and moved to the medical centre. He did not attend qualifying.

Sean Dylan Kelly (25th) is still in at Forward, replacing Alex Escrig.