Today’s 15-minute Q2 qualifying session at Jerez was a real thriller, with Romano Fenati (Rivacold Snipers Team Honda NSF250RW) and Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) giving it their all for a place on the front row of the grid.
The pair were so close to achieving their goals but will start tomorrow’s fourth race of the 20-race 2023 Moto World Championship from row two.
Fenati rode the fourth fastest lap of the outing, completing the session was just 0.019 seconds off the front row. The 27-year-old Italian therefore knows that he has a good chance of fighting for a podium result in tomorrow’s Spanish Grand Prix. Fenati has so far scored 13 victories in his career.
Masia was incredibly close to bettering his fellow NSF250RW rider, only 0.064 seconds slower than Fenati around this epic racetrack, which has been hosting motorcycle Grand Prix events since the late 1980s and is predicted to welcome a sell-out crowd tomorrow.
Honda’s next rider was British teenager Scott Ogden (Visiontrack Racing Team Honda NSF250RW), who once again impressed with his speed, in only his second GP season. The qualified 11th, seven tenths of a second from pole position. Kaito Toba (Sic58 Squadra Corse Honda NSF250RW) was 13th and Tatsuki Suzuki (Leopard Racing Honda NSF250RW) 16th.
Team-mates Taiyo Furusato (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) and Mario Aji (Honda Team Asia Honda NSF250RW) had a challenging day in the stifling southern Spanish heat, ending qualifying on the 24th and 28th on the Jerez grid.
Furusato tried to play a clever strategy, but in fact the 17-year-old from Kanoya was slowed by the group ahead of him. Aji’s main issue was front-end chatter, which prevented the 19-year-old Indonesian from achieving his full pace.
The fifth round of the 2023 Moto3 series takes place at Le Mans over the weekend of 13th/14th May, before the paddock moves to Mugello Italy, Sachsenring and then Germany and Assen, Netherlands for three races on consecutive weekends.