moto3 / First row for Mir, fractured collarbone for Loi
Dramatic moments in Qualifying at the Misano World Circuit: Joan Mir conquers the first row for the fifth time this season but on the straight, Livio Loi was thrown into the air after contact and fractured his left collarbone.
Saturday morning at the Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli” started with warm sunshine and ideal temperatures to fine-tune the bikes in the last free practice session before qualifying. The young Moto3 riders were the first to put their wheels on the 4.2km of the track that this weekend hosts the San Marino Grand Prix event and the Rimini Riviera, the 13th round of the 2017 season.
Leopard Racing Team leagues, Joan Mir and Livio Loi, started the day in the wake of the encouraging performance of Friday. Mallorca’s talent began to push, falling for the first time under the 1’43 barrier and closing with the fourth fastest time of the session. FP3 was also positive for the Belgian, who after some modifications to the setup of his Honda NSF250rw, proved himself a real challenger for the top 10.
Shortly after noon, the temperatures rose (air 25°C / 34°C ground) and the scene was set for a thrilling Qualifying, with all the protagonists of the Moto3 class engaged in the conquest for pole position. The first part of the session was flooded with red helmets, with the first 22 riders enclosed within a second. The two Leopard Racing riders were temporarily suspended in the top ten. Everything lit up in the last laps before the chequered flag. Joan Mir, free from traffic on the track, began to put all the pieces together and produced a 1’42.372, which was good enough to secure third on the grid. Majorca’s talent thus wins a place on the first row for the fifth time (the second consecutive) this season and tomorrow will be ready to battle his direct rivals.
Black luck for his companion Livio Loi. At the end of the session at the very last corner, a few meters away from the finish line, he fell into Rodrigo’s bike ahead of him. The Belgian was following him very close and could not do anything to avoid the impact, his bike was fired into the air and Loi sustained a fracture of the collarbone. Preliminarily checks carried out at the Circuit Medical Center were confirmed with scans soon after. Hasselt’s 21-year-old will soon return home where he will work to heal as quickly as possible.
The protagonists of the Moto3 class will return tomorrow morning at 8:40 am for 20 minutes of Warm Up, anticipating the 2017 season’s thirteenth race, which will kick off at 11:00 local time.
#36 Joan MIR – 3rd (1’42.372)
“Personally, it was a good qualification, in the sense that we found a good set-up, we have clear ideas for tomorrow. In the warm up we will have something to improve, but overall I am very happy with both the setting and feelings of the bike. Obviously, on the other hand, I’m sorry for Livio: I hope he’ll be back soon! “
Moto3™ Qualifying Classification:
1 – E. Bastianini / ITA / Estrella Galicia 0,0 / Honda / 1’42.147
2 – J. Martin / SPA / Del Conca Gresini / Honda / 1’42.320
3 – J. Mir / SPA / Leopard Racing / Honda / 1’42.372
4 – F. Di Giannantonio / ITA / Del Conca Gresini / Honda / 1’42.391
5 – R. Fenati / SPA / Marinelli Rivacold / Honda / 1’42.473
21 – L. Loi / BEL / Leopard Racing / Honda / 1’43.111
Moto3™ Schedule (Local Time, GMT +2):
Sunday, September 10th:
08:40-09:00 – WarmUp
11:00 (23 Laps) – Race
Photo credit: Leopard Racing