Malaysia GP: Second row start after tough qualifying
Jonas Folger was able to adapt well to the track’s drying conditions throughout the 45-minutes long timed session.
After a torrential rain shower, for which Moto3 qualifying practice was red flagged for a couple of minutes, the tarmac was still wet as Saturday afternoon’s Moto2 qualifying got underway. Already on Friday was clearly to see that the track dried out just slowly. This was the same on Saturday. But during the final stages of qualifying, some riders risked to go out with slick tyres for their time attack. However, Jonas Folger and his crew didn’t consider such a change. But as it proved out later, it didn’t brought any big advantages as pole man Johann Zarco as well second fastest rider Franco Morbidelli did their time attack with rain tyres. Also, Folger finished the session with rain tyres and was recorded with fourth fastest lap time finally. These unusual big gaps are caused by the difficult to judge track’s conditions. But Folger’s pace is fast in both conditions, in the dry and on a wet tarmac too. But in case of a possible dry race, everything will start from scratch again.
#94 Jonas FOLGER (Dynavolt Intact GP, KALEX), Grid position 4th – 2´21.559 (15/15):
“Throughout the session it was difficult to adapt to the current situation because the track’s condition changed constantly. The track dried out more and more with every lap. So, for this it was hard to find the limit every time. Beyond that, you always reach quite quick the limits with rain tyres and to adapt to the changed situation and to go faster, this was the task today. Maybe that I could finish higher if I would have a free line during the final minutes. It’s a pity, because I was already qualified for a front row start but then came Axel (Pons) and pushed me out. But honestly, I’ve to admit that his gamble paid off perfect. On the other side, it wasn’t an option to switch to slick tyres for us. Hats off to Johann too, because he set an ultra-fast lap time with rain tyres. He is pretty fast. But if it’s wet for the race tomorrow, I don’t see any problems for me. My pace is consistent and fast under rainy conditions. However, in case of a dry race everything is to shake up a bit as we didn’t have so much practice time on a dry tarmac. In addition, it might be that the timing was an important fact today at which time you start your time attack. Nevertheless, P4 is a good starting positon, doesn’t matter in which conditions.”
Moto2™ Qualifying Classification:
1 Johann ZARCO / FRA / Ajo Motorsport / KALEX / 2´18.621
2 Franco MORBIDELLI / ITA / Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS / KALEX / 2´20.755 +2.134
3 Axel PONS / SPA / AGR Team / KALEX / 2´21.383 +2.762
4 #94 Jonas FOLGER / GER / Dynavolt Intact GP / KALEX / 2´21.559 +2.938