Vinales, Oliveira and Rins satisfied with positive qualifying session

 In Moto3, News

The first qualifying session of 2012 featured a strong showing from the Repsol riders in Losail. Maverick Viñales came close to recording the best time of the session and ended up less than a tenth of a second off poleman Sandro Cortese. Miguel Oliveira, who also had his turn at the head of the timesheet, placed eighth and debutant Álex Rins —the fastest at the halfway mark- ended up thirteenth.

Rossi, Cortese, Salom, Viñales, Fenati and Rins; all of these riders had a spell as top candidate to hold onto pole position number one of the season. Maverick was the rider who stayed there for the longest period and appeared to become the first poleman of 2012, but he ran out of time to respond to a late push by Cortese. The German was just 0.016 faster than the Repsol rider at the end of the session. However, Viñales is still one of the big favourites in the fight for the win tomorrow.

Oliveira and Rins also had a positive session. The Portuguese rider could not find a slipstream on his hot laps of the Qatari track, but his eighth place gives him reason to be optimistic ahead of the race. He will start from the third row, whilst newcomer to the World Championship Álex Rins till take off from row five after improving upon his times from Thursday and Friday.

Miguel Oliveira QP – 2:08.926, 16 laps, 86 km
“The session went fairly well; we are on the third row and that isn’t a bad result, even though I would have liked to have been further up the order. We have improved upon yesterday’s time, although we still had a lot of wind to face. I wasn’t able to tail anyone and was losing speed on the straights, but we have the pace to be up at the head of the field. We have improved some of the technical side of the front end and are just waiting to try out the tyres for tomorrow.”

Álex Rins QP – 2:09.139, 17 laps, 91 km.
“That was a very positive session. We matched yesterday’s time, although I am still missing a little something to be up front. Now, alongside the technicians, I will look at the telemetry and we will study the best way to improve our times. I am pretty clear about the race, although to be honest I am a little nervous with it being my World Championship debut. We should try and come out as relaxed as possible tomorrow, in order to have a good race.”

Maverick Viñales QP – 2:08.204, 15 laps, 81 km.
“This session was really good for us. We will try a few different things with the engine in warmup in order to be up there with the KTMs. The race is shaping up well for me. We have a good pace and have been working with worn tyres. A front row start can be considered a good result, because that will help me to avoid a jam on the first corner and to break away. The goal for tomorrow is to find a quick pace. As the laps go by we will see if a win is possible or not.”

Source: Repsol Media

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