MotoGP

RINS TAKES SECOND ROW START AHEAD OF PENULTIMATE BATTLE


Team Suzuki Press Office – October 22

Alex Rins: 5th – 1’58.575 (+ 0.785)
Joan Mir: 11th – 1’59.145 (+ 1.355)


The Sepang International Circuit shone fondly on the MotoGP field on Saturday, with leaden skies moving off in time for the critical qualifying session.

FP3 was an intense session in the morning as times came down compared with Friday’s tentative laps. Alex Rins and Joan Mir both felt confident on their GSX-RRs and their pace was strong. Despite a few spits of rain panicking riders and onlookers alike in the closing minutes of FP3, Mir and Rins were unperturbed and pushed on to secure spots in Q2 with fifth and eighth respectively.

As usual, the Suzuki duo took profit of a dry FP4 to fine-tune their settings and prepare for tomorrow’s race by doing runs on used tyres, and this proved useful.
The final qualifying session, Q2, was always going to be a frenetic one due to the close nature of MotoGP this season. But Rins and Mir handled it well, determined to get good grid spots and increase their chances of a top finish.

With seconds left, on his final flying lap, Rins charged up the order to take fifth place. Mir was a little bit unlucky as he had to avoid a fallen rider on his last lap; however, he will still start the Malaysian Grand Prix from 11th.

Alex Rins:

“I’m quite happy with today’s performance, because I was fast in FP3 which allowed me to go straight to Q2, and then in FP4 I was also able to have good pace on used tyres. My grid position is good, and my pace is not bad, but we’re a little bit far from the pole time. Anyway, I’ll try to manage the race carefully, preserving tyres and trying to understand when and where to make overtakes. I’ll give my best and let’s see what happens.”

Joan Mir:

“In terms of feeling it’s been a positive day for us. I managed to improve my feeling with the bike and I felt confident. However, we weren’t able to get a clear fast lap in qualifying due to various reasons, and then on my best lap I had to avoid Aleix when he went down, and I went wide so I couldn’t make the corner. Anyway, I’ll start from 11th and the tyre management will be very important in this long race, so I’ll keep that in mind and try to give a good performance.”

Livio Suppo - Team Manager:

“Both riders have good race pace again, so that makes us optimistic for tomorrow, especially if the rain stays away. I’m very pleased with Alex’s second row start, but unfortunately Joan didn’t have such a good session. He lost his best lap when avoiding another rider, so in the end he didn’t improve. But having both riders in Q2 was good, and I feel positive about their potential.”

GRAND PRIX OF MALAYSIA QUALIFYING CLASSIFICATION:

1 Jorge MARTIN Prima Pramac Racing 1'57.790
2 Enea BASTIANINI Gresini Racing MotoGP 1'58.246 0.456 0.456
3 Marc MARQUEZ Repsol Honda Team 1'58.454 0.664 0.208
4 Marco BEZZECCHI Mooney VR46 Racing Team 1'58.490 0.700 0.036
5 Alex RINS Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'58.575 0.785 0.085
6 Luca MARINI Mooney VR46 Racing Team 1'58.579 0.789 0.004
7 Franco MORBIDELLI Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1'58.654 0.864 0.075
8 Maverick VIÑALES Aprilia Racing 1'58.766 0.976 0.112
9 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati Lenovo Team 1'58.862 1.072 0.096
10 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia Racing 1'58.935 1.145 0.073
11 Joan MIR Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'59.145 1.355 0.210
12 Fabio QUARTARARO Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1'59.215 1.425 0.070
13 Brad BINDER Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Q1
14 Jack MILLER Ducati Lenovo Team Q1
15 Cal CRUTCHLOW WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team Q1
16 Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO Gresini Racing MotoGP Q1
17 Pol ESPARGARO Repsol Honda Team Q1
18 Johann ZARCO Prima Pramac Racing Q1
19 Miguel OLIVEIRA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Q1
20 Remy GARDNER Tech3 KTM Factory Racing Q1
21 Alex MARQUEZ LCR Honda CASTROL Q1
22 Raul FERNANDEZ Tech3 KTM Factory Racing Q1
23 Tetsuta NAGASHIMA LCR Honda IDEMITSU Q1
24 Darryn BINDER WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team Q1

Sepang GP Image Gallery: CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS




For more stories about Alex Rins, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Joan Mir, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

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