Marcos Ramirez (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) came within 0.274 seconds of taking Honda’s 15th Moto3 pole position this afternoon. The 21-year-old Spaniard, who started the last two races from pole, will nevertheless start the last Moto3 race of the year from the front row of the grid, aiming for his first victory since August’s British Grand Prix.
Fifth-fastest Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Honda NSF250RW) is Honda’s next best qualifier, the 16-year-old rookie once again showing impressive speed and now targeting his second podium of the year.
Recently crowned 2019 Moto3 World Champion Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) ended free practice a close second fastest to team-mate Ramirez, but will start from the top of the third row of the grid after riding the seventh-fastest lap in qualifying.
The 22-year-old Italian has won the last three races and will want to end his time in Moto3 – before he graduates to Moto2 next season – with a fourth consecutive win, but he will have to fight hard from the third row.
Eighth fastest was San Marino GP winner Tatsuki Suzuki (Sic58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW), with Austrian GP winner Romano Fenati (VNE Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) completing the top ten.
Fellow Italian Tony Arbolino (VNE Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) was one of the fastest riders in the Q2 session until he fell. He will start from 12th at the back end of row four, one row ahead of John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing Honda NSF250RW), Niccolo Antonelli (Sic58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW) and Alonso Lopez (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Honda NSF250RW)
Team-mates Kaito Toba (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) and Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) had a challenging final qualifying of 2019. Ogura, 19-years-old from Fukuoka, was 21st, while Ogura, 18-years-old from Tokyo, was 25th. Both riders struggled to get enough feeling from the tires in the cold, windy conditions to ride as hard as they know they can. Their day ended badly when both were sanctioned for riding slowly in two or more sectors of the track, so they will both start from the back row of the grid.
Following tomorrow’s final races of the year the MotoGP commences post-season tests here on Tuesday, while the Moto2 and Moto3 teams moves to Jerez.