The spectators at the Termas de Rio Hondo had a lengthy wait before witnessing a frantic shootout for pole, which saw Jaume Masia claim the top spot with a well timed run ahead of the Moto3 Argentina Grand Prix.

The Bester Capital Dubai rider found the fastest time of the weekend on his penultimate lap aboard the KTM, with no-one able to better his 1m 18.775s effort as traffic on track made an impact, handing him his first pole positon in grand prix racing.

The eighteen year old will be joined for his maiden front row appearance by Aron Canet, who slots into second for Max Biaggi’s Sterilgarda Max Racing Team after needing to come through Q1. The Spaniard already seemed up to speed after running in the first half of qualifying and came just 0.319s short of the top spot.

Third on the grid went to 2018's pole-sitter in Argentina, Tony Arbolino, for the Snipers Team - the sole Honda on the front row.

Qatar runner-up Lorenzo Dalla Porta heads up row two after posting the fourth fastest time for Leopard, pushing Niccolo Antonelli (SIC 58 Squadra Corse) down to fifth. Andrea Migno secured sixth on the grid after he too came through Q1 (as the fastest rider) on the second Bester Capital Dubai entry, marking a very successful Saturday for the team.

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Romano Fenati (VNE Snipers) couldn’t make the session work for him and although he found a gap on track after a second wait in the pits, he could only manage seventh.

Lining up next to the Italian on the grid is Qatar victor Kaito Toba. The Honda Team Asia man had been brave enough to be the first to take to the track as all the riders tried to trick each other into a tow, but the bold move did not pay off.

Ayumu Sasaki, who made it directly into Q2 after Canet had his best lap of FP3 scrapped for exceeding track limits, will fill ninth for Petronas Sprinta Racing.
He out-qualified his team-mate John McPhee, who had been a dominant force in practice and was fastest heading into Q2, but ended the session a disappointing eleventh after being the last pilot to hit the track.

The Petronas pair were split by Raul Fernandez, the Angel Nieto Team rider finding enough late pace to hit the top ten.

Home rider Gabriel Rodrigo (Kommerling Gresini) was swallowed by a flurry of late hot laps in the closing minutes, dropping to 13th at the chequered flag.

Ai Oguru (Honda Team Asia) was the best of the rookies in 15th.

A fall in Q2 saw Can Oncu unable to progress, the exciting reigning Red Bull Rookies champion will start from 23rd while Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) joins the paddock after turning sixteen, he will start his first Grand Prix from 28th.

Briton Tom Booth-Amos was not far off the pace of the leaders, but the competitive nature of Moto3 sees him start 27th for CIP Green-Power after the changes made to his bike failed to bring any benefits.

Albert Arenas was forced to miss the second round of the season after falling from his bicycle in training between races, resulting to a spell in intensive care after an operation on his spleen. His replacement at the Angel Nieto team, Aliex Viu, starts 25th despite hitting the bike left on track in FP3 after Garcia and Makar Yurchenko clashed.

 

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