Qualifying came to a dramatic conclusion in the all-Honda Moto2 class, with wildly different fortunes for two leading riders.
Home-fans’ favourite Sam Lowes (Speed Up Racing Speed Up) stopped out on the track mid-session … out of fuel after he’d missed his pit signal. With just enough time to get the bike back and refuelled, Lowes put in a flyer at the end of the session to claim a record-speed pole – his third this year.
Lowes’s run knocked top rookie Alex Rins (Paginas Amarillas HP 40 Kalex) and runaway title leader Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport Kalex) to second and third.
Shortly afterwards, defending champion Tito Rabat (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Kalex) was on a final fast lap trying to regain the front row when he crashed heavily, also bringing down Dominique Aegerter (Technomag Racing Interwetten Kalex).
Rabat qualified fourth and will race tomorrow, despite being battered and bruised.
Thomas Luthi (Derendinger Racing Interwetten Kalex) and Takaaki Nakagami (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia Kalex) were a close fifth and sixth, just ahead of Jonas Folger (AGR Team Kalex).
Lorenzo Baldassarri (Forward Racing Kalex), the improving younger brother Alex Marquez (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Kalex) and Sandro Cortese (Dynavolt Intact GP Kalex) completed the top ten.