moto3 / Second and third rows for Mir and Loi in Brno
The Leopard Racing Team worked hard in the Czech Republic on Saturday to adapt to the boiling hot conditions. The Spanish and the Belgian, who secured his best grid position of the year, are happy with progress but head into Sunday with a question mark over weather.
The day began with the sun warming the circuit, ideal temperatures (Air 23 ° C / Ground 27 ° C) embracing the valley that encloses the impressive circuit of the Automotodrom Brno, host of the Grand Prix České republiky 2017. However, the seemed to play a joke on the Moto3 riders – lacking grip and causing many crashes. The Leopard Racing Team duo, Joan Mir and Livio Loi, were well behaved in FP3, running towards the very first positions in the times. The session saw the Belgian (again setting the highest top speed) to precede his Spanish teammate by just 22 milliseconds.
At 12:35 am the pit-lane came alive for the most anticipated session of the day: official Qualifying. The two Leopard Racing Team riders set off with their focus on the front rows, but an electronic problem slowed down the session for Livio Loi, who had to go back to the box and lost precious minutes. The timely intervention of his crew promptly put him back in working order and the Belgian climbed the time sheet quickly to ninth position, his best qualification of the year.
His team-mate and the leader of the Moto3 class, Joan Mir, continued throughout the session to squeeze tenths from his Honda NSF250RW, duelling away with the his rivals in the Championship. At the last moment, the talent of Palma de Mallorca managed to shred his reference time, even after being hindered by traffic. Tomorrow he will open the second row right in fourth, showing his and the Leopard Team’s intent.
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 tenth race, which will kick off at 11:00 local time.
#36 Joan MIR – 4th (2’08.896)
“Even today was a positive day – it was only in the last lap that I could not push as I was slowed down other by other riders. All-in-all we achieved a good grid position and I would like to thank the whole team for the work they have done today.”
#11 Livio LOI – 9th (2’09.148)
“It was a good qualification, despite a small electronic problem that made me lose a couple of laps. In the end, I found myself in the traffic, otherwise I could come even further. My team worked well and I want to thank them: we are ready for the race tomorrow!”
Moto3™ Qualifying Classification:
1 – G. Rodrigo / ARG / RBA Racing / KTM / 2’08.571
2 – R. Fenati / ITA / Marinelli Rivacold / Honda / 2’08.721
3 – J. Guevara / SPA / RBA Racing / KTM / 2’08.874
4 – J. Mir / SPA / Leopard Racing / Honda / 2’08.967
9 – L. Loi / BEL / Leopard Racing / Honda / 2’09.148
Moto3™ Schedule (Local Time, GMT +2):
Sunday, August 6th:
08:40-09:00 – WarmUp
11:00 (19 Laps) – Race
Photo credit: Leopard Racing