Moto2 2022
Round 16

Chantra Takes Motegi Second Row, Ogura On Row Five

jp Twin Ring Motegi

The worst of today’s horrible weather conditions – heavy rain, thunder and lightning – arrived during the Moto2 Q2 session, bringing out the red flags before a one-hour delay while Race Direction waited for the surface water to subside from the track.

Chantra Takes Motegi Second Row, Ogura On Row Five

When track action resumed Somkiat Chantra (IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia Kalex) was immediately back to his best. The 23-year-old Thai rider, who was second quickest when the original session was red-flagged, revelling in the tricky conditions, ended the second outing fifth fastest. This was his best qualifying position since August’s Austrian GP, which he finished on the podium. 

World Championship challenger and local hero Ai Ogura (IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia Kalex) didn’t excel in the conditions like his team-mate, ending the outing in 13th. The 21-year-old from Saitama currently stands second in the title chase, only seven points behind series leader Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull Ajo Kalex), who ended today 11th quickest. The 21-year-old from Saitama will therefore start his home Grand Prix from the fifth row of the grid tomorrow, when conditions are forecast to be fully dry, so he will need to make a strong start and deploy his excellent overtaking skills to move closer to the front 

When Q2 was restarted Aron Canet (Flexbox HP40 Kalex) dominated the session to take his third pole position of the year. The 22-year-old Spaniard will share the front row of the grid with 17-year-old countryman Fermin Aldeguer (Beta Tools Speed Up Boscoscuro) and 26-year-old Briton Jake Dixon (Shimoko GASGAS Aspar Team) 

The second row is Tony Arbolino (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex), Chantra and Filip Salac (Gresini Racing Moto2 Kalex). The top ten is completed by Jorge Navarro (Flexbox HP40 Kalex 12), Cameron Beaubier (American Racing Kalex), Keminth KUBO (Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team Kalex) and Barry Baltus (RW Racing GP Kalex). 

After tomorrow’s racing the Moto2 grid heads to Thailand for next Sunday’s Thai GP, the third race in three weekends. The last three races of the 20-race 2022 season take place in Australia, Malaysia and Spain, at Valencia, on 6 November.

Somkiat Chantra
Somkiat Chantra 35
IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia
In Q2 I finished fifth on a difficult day due to the heavy rain. Every five minutes the quantity of water on the track changed and you needed to adapt to the new condition. Starting from the second row is fantastic for tomorrow’s race. 

Ai Ogura
Ai Ogura 79
IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia
I had a good feeling in the morning session and rode well. But in the qualifying session the conditions changed. Also, we had a lengthy red flag. I had only nine minutes in the last outing and I couldn’t adapt quickly. Anyway, P13 in wet conditions isn’t bad for me. I hope we can do a good race tomorrow. 

Published on