Aleix Espargaró beats Martín, takes pole and breaks 7-year fast

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After a seven-year absence, Aleix Espargaró dominated Saturday in Argentina to take his third pole in his career and Aprilia’s first in MotoGP – the team’s last pole had been in the 500 cc category, on October 29, 2000. , with the british Jeremy McWilliams. This Saturday, in Termas de Río Hondo, the pilot scored 1min37s688 and secured the position of honor for the Argentine GP.

The Spaniard is accompanied by Jorge Martín and Luca Marini in the front row. Martín came out on top on his last lap of the track, but he didn’t get pole. Behind them are Pol Espargaró and Maverick Viñales.

Aleix Espargaro is pole in Argentina (Photo: MotoGP)

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Rounding out the top-10: Fabio Quartararo, Álex Rins, Joan Mir, Johann Zarco and Takaaki Nakagami. The Japanese and Pol Espargaró were the riders who secured space in the second session of qualifying, taking first and second respectively in Q1.

The start of the Argentine MotoGP GP, in Termas de Río Hondo, takes place this Sunday (3) and is scheduled for 15:00 (Brasília). O BIG PRIZE accompanies all the activities of the opening of the 2022 Motorcycle World Championship.

Q1: Bagnaia even tries, but can’t make it to Q2. Nakagami and Pol Espargaró secure seats

The 14 drivers from Q1 took to the track to compete for two spots in Q2. And Takaaki Nagakami and Enea Bastianini were the ones who guaranteed their presence in the pole-position decision. Franceso Bagnaia had serious difficulties, and could not get out of 14th position.

With seven minutes to go, Miguel Oliveira was the closest to trying to threaten the top two in Q1, but still 0s337 of Nakagami and 0s323 of the championship leader. In the meantime, Bagnaia opened another lap to try to improve his time. And not only did he improve, but he set the best time of the first stage of the classification with 1min38s523.

Pol Espargaró and Takaaki Nakagami qualified for Q1 (Video: MotoGP)

But the Japanese LCR driver dropped even further with 1min38s523. And Pol Espargaró, two minutes to the end, with 1min38s501. It was the two competitors who held the vacancies, with Bagnaia in third position. And the Italian couldn’t improve, taking the 14th position. Nakagami and Pol Espargaró passed to Q2.

Q2: Aleix Espargaró takes his third pole and first for Aprilia

With 15 minutes on the coronometer, 12 riders took to the track to dispute the pole-position of the third stage of MotoGP 2022. And Maverick Viñales was the first to set the best time: 1min38s880. Jack Miller soon set the second fastest time and crashed out before he could open another fast lap – almost three hours after qualifying, the Ducati rider was penalized for driving slowly at the entrance of Turn 7. Thus, he lost three places on the grid. and wide in 14th position.

Aleix Espargaró showed that he really did well with the Argentine track by setting 1min38s108, the best time of the session so far. The difference to Jorge Martín, in second place, was 0s317. And, at least until the two minutes to the end, nothing has changed.

Aleix Espargaró at the Argentine MotoGP GP (MotoGP Video)

That’s when, less than a minute and a half, Jorge Martín stole the winger from Aleix. The fight then became between the Aprilia and Pramac riders. And that was confirmed when Espargaró regained pole position. The pilot conquers his third pole in the 200th GP of his career.

MotoGP 2022, Argentine GP, Termas de Río Hondo, Start Grid:

1 FOR ASPARAGUS Aprilia 1:37,688
two J MARTIN Pramac Ducati 1:37,839 +0.151
3 L MARINI VR46 Ducati 1:38,119 +0.431
4 P ESPARGARÓ Honda 1:38,165 +0.477
5 M VIÑALES Aprilia 1:38,196 +0.508
6 F FOURTH Yamaha 1:38,281 +0.593
7 IN RINSES suzuki 1:38,455 +0.767
8 J MIR suzuki 1:38,516 +0.828
9 J ZARCO Pramac Ducati 1:38,537 +0.849
10 T NAKAGAMI Honda LCR 1:38,576 +0.888
11 B FINDER KTM 1:38,932 +1,244
12 AND BASTIANINI Gresini Ducati 1:38,566 +0.878 (Q1)
13 F BAGNAIA Ducati 1:38,610 +0.922
14 J MILLER Ducati 1:38,584 +0.896* (punished)
15 F MORBIDELI Yamaha 1:38,805 +1,117
16 M OLIVEIRA KTM 1:38,871 +1,183
17 M BEZZECCHI VR46 Ducati 1:38,877 +1,189
18 THE DOVIZIOUS Yamaha RNF 1:38,938 +1,250
19 TO MARQUEZ Honda LCR 1:39,095 +1,407
20 F DI GIANNANTONIO Gresini Ducati 1:39,126 +1,438
21 R FERNÁNDEZ Tech3 KTM 1:39,153 +1,465
22 R GARDENER Tech3 KTM 1:39,159 +1,471
23 D FINDER Yamaha RNF 1:39,380 +1,692
24 S BRADL Honda 1:39,487 +1,799
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