Romano Fenati celebrated a fantastic final run which saw him leap to pole position in qualifying for the San Marino Grand Prix, round fourteen of the Moto3 championship.

The Italian took advantage of the slew of riders looking for a tow behind Dennis Foggia who had been fast all weekend, all of whom took the chequered flag too late for a final flying lap after the Leopard man left the pits late looking to lose the pack.

On track, Fenati had slotted his Sterilgarda Max Racing Team Husqvarna in behind Stefano Nepa, who was on a personal best lap.

Choosing not to get in an overtake battle, altering his line and then pulling out for a slipstream ahead at the final straight marked a change of tactics from the usually solo number 55, but still brought his third pole in four rounds with a lap of 1m 41,756s.

Fenati has good form at the track and was the winner of the Misano round last season.

Friday’s fastest man, Aragon race winner Dennis Foggia, kept second with his Honda just 0,257s slower as pole continues to elude him this season.

 

Niccolo Antonelli completed a very experienced all Italian front row for Avinita VR46 Academy and was the top KTM rider.

Fellow countryman Andrea Migno came into qualifying with the fastest time after leading the way in FP3 and was in the mix for the top places on his way to an eventual fourth for Rivacold Snipers.

Jaume Masia was the best of the Red Bull KTM Ajo team-mates as they again circulated together for most of the session, in fifth.

Xavier Artigas was the top rookie and was second in the early stages before being shuffled back to sixth on the second Leopard entry.

Riccardo Rossi moved up to seventh late on for BOE Owlride.

The slightly more experienced of the two Bardahl VR46 Riders Academy Wildcards, Elia Bartolini, who has featured in several races already as a replacement rider, most notably his stint in for Antonelli, made it straight into Q2 and put in a solid performance for eighth.

Championship leader Pedro Acosta has already officially been named as rookie of the year following the Aragon result. He continues his pursuit of the Moto3 crown from ninth on the grid on the second Ajo bike after arriving at the line with a large group of riders, with few of that pack seeing gains.

Carloa Tatay moved through from Q1 with the top time and he kept pushing his Avintia Esponsorama into Q2 to complete the top ten on the grid.

Nepa’s personal best lap with Fenati on track saw him keep eleventh. Acosta’s main rival, Sergio Garcia, left it late to put in a fast time at the end of FP3 to head straight to Q2. He spent much of the session solo and will start down in 12th for Gaviota GasGas Aspar.

The second of the VR 46 Academy wildcards, Matteo Bertelle, used his track knowledge from his time at the circuit in the Italian championship to place 15th, just behind Aragon pole man Darryn Binder, after moving up with the second best time in Q1.


John McPhee was one of several fallers in FP3, leaving him needing to progress through Q1. The Petronas rider suffered another spill in the first qualifying session. Unable to attack he could only watch as his time slipped to 5th in the session, earning him a 19th place gird slot. McPhee was a winner at the track last season in the first race at World Circuit Marco Simoncelli after a poor qualifying so will be looking to repeat that performance.

Tatsuki Suzuki also had a torrid time in Q1. He too fell during FP3, but when he crashed in qualifying it was before he had set a flying lap leaving him at the bottom of the timesheets.

After two separate incidents that brought out the red flag in FP3 both Deniz Oncu and Alberto Surra are due to have further reviews of their conditions in the morning, so both were absent in qualifying.

Gresini announced before the session that Gabriel Rodrigo would miss the rest of the race weekend after fracturing his left humerus. Their second rider Jeremy Alcoba cemented a bad day for the team with a 25th place start.