VALENCIA GP - QUALIFYNG SESSION

Valencia GP - Qualifyng session

MotoGP

APRILIA, NICE THIRD ROW WITH ESPARGARÓ

ALEIX GOES THROUGH THE FIRSTS QUALIFIERS WITH THE SECOND PLACE TIME AND THEN FINISHES WITH EIGHTH OVERALL

Aleix Espargaró earned a spot on the third row in tomorrow's GP on the Valencia track which will close out the 2017 MotoGP Championship. It is a nice result, also in light of Aleix's less than optimum physical conditions. The rider is returning following surgery on his left hand fifteen days ago and he is fighting a pesky bout of bronchitis that has continued to weaken him for the past few days.

In the morning FP3 session, because of a crash right at the end of the session, Aleix missed going straight through to Q2 by just 61 thousandths of a second. But in the qualifying round, he was able to redeem himself, putting a nice time of 1’30.913 on the sheets which placed him on safe ground against his adversaries' attacks. In the end, his time was the second best of the session, earning him a spot in Q2.

Once there, the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini rider improved further, riding his RS-GP to a lap time of 1’30.857 and taking the eighth best time which earns him the centre spot on the third row of the grid, alongside Rossi and Dovizioso.

Sam Lowes fell victim to a crash just as he was on his best lap of Q1, so he finished 24th - therefore on the eighth row - with a time of 1’31.816.

ALEIX ESPARGARO'

"Until now, this weekend and not been the simplest for me and not because of my hand. Unfortunately, I've had bronchitis and a fever that sap my energy. In any case, we managed to improve the bike, especially today. I crashed because I was pushing beyond the limit. I really want to finish this season well. We are eighth on the grid and that is a good position. Tomorrow it will be a long race where it will be fundamental not to make mistakes. Our pace is good and we have an excellent chance of finishing the race well."

 SAM LOWES

"On the first outing in qualifying I did a good time that I thought I would be able to improve on the second run. Unfortunately, Rabat crashed in front of me and when I braked to avoid him I lost the front end. In any case, we did some good work, lapping a lot with used tyres and maintaining an interesting pace without making any mistakes. There are a lot of riders within a few tenths of one another. We have the potential to stay in the group and to play our cards."