Joan Mir takes career pole in Austria
Joan Mir, the rookie from Palma de Mallorca took a sensational first pole position, and Leopard Racing’s first of the year today in Austria.
It was an extraordinary result on Saturday during official Qualifying for the Motorrad Grand Prix von Osterreich. With the sun now high in the sky and warming the 4.3 kilometer long Spielberg circuit, the scene was set for an intense battle for pole. The three Leopard Racing riders were on the pace in FP3, boosted ahead of the Qualifying session.
As happened yesterday, Mir and Quartararo were towards the front in FP3, ending in second and third place prospectively. Locatelli was in eighth and just 0.6s off the pace, it was as tight as ever. The signs suggested a good Qualifying session for the ‘triple force’ of Christian Lunderbg, but only the afternoon would reveal the truth…
In his tenth appearance on the World Championship stage (having made a wildcard appearance in 2015 at Phillip Island), Joan Mir rocketed to the first pole position of his very promising career. Brad Binder had looked the favourite to grab pole, but a brilliant 1’36.228 lap from the rookie saw him surprise everyone and return Leopard Racing to pole position.
Riders will take to the track at 08:40 local time (GMT +2) on Sunday for 20 minutes of Warm Up. Then at 11:00 the lights go out for the tenth round of the 2016 World Championship.
#36 Joan MIR – 1st (1’36.228):
“It seems like a dream, but it’s reality: it is the first pole position of my life! In the last race, after I qualified 18th and fell at the third curve, I was really disappointed. But I took advantage of the holidays to recharge my batteries and to work hard on the bike. The results are seen today. I am very happy, for me and for the whole team, we needed this pole position. Tomorrow will be different from those before, on this track I really have a good rhythm, I’ll try to get out front and see what we can get!”
Source: Leopard Racing