Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) and Tatsuki Suzuki (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) will start tomorrow’s second round of the 21-round 2023 Moto3 World Championship from the second row of the grid after qualifying fifth and sixth fastest.
Moto3 riders and teams had a complicated second day at Termas de Rio Hondo, with intermittent rain affecting both the final practice session and the Q1 and Q2 qualifying outings. Only at the very end of Q2 had the track dried enough for riders to match their times from yesterday’s two dry practice sessions.
Masia and Suzuki were third and fourth yesterday, so perhaps the 22-year-old Spaniard and 25-year-old Japanese would have had an even better Saturday if the weather had been kinder.
Nineteen-year-old Briton Scott Ogden (Visiontrack Racing Team Honda NSF250RW) impressed many onlookers when he went eighth fastest to put himself on the third row for the second race of his second World Championship season.
Kaito Toba (Sic58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW) fought hard for a place close to the front of the grid but the 22-year-old Japanese couldn’t quite match the pole-position pace and ended Q2 11th fastest, for a fourth row start.
The Termas circuit has offered little grip so far, both in the dry and in the damp. Team-mates Mario Suryo Aji (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) and team-mate Taiyo Furusato (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) did their best to cope with the low grip.
Furusato and Aji ended free practice this morning in 22nd and 25th, so they had to tackle the Q1 qualifier. Halfway through the session Aji was close to the top four, who get promoted to Q2, but by the time the chequered flag was waved he had slipped down the other.
Aji will therefore start the race from the eighth row of the grid, one row ahead of Furusato, the 19-year-old Indonesian and 17-year-old Japanese both chasing their first points of the season.
Following tomorrow’s race the Moto3 paddock heads to the USA for the Grand Prix of the Americas on 16th April.