The Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo rider secured second position in qualifying, just 0.004 off pole. Kent will start the Moto3 race tomorrow from the second row in sixth position.
Saturday staged an excellent qualifying session for the Husqvarna riders at the San Marino and Riviera di Rimini GP. On the first completely dry session of the weekend, Niklas Ajo missed out on pole by just 4 thousandths of a second to Jack Miller. This second position by the Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo rider is his best qualifying result in his career. Meanwhile, Danny Kent set his best lap of the weekend on his final lap, to place himself in sixth place for a second row start.
Kent and Ajo began the day with an exploratory lap on a track of mixed wet and dry conditions. After waiting for fifteen minutes in the box for the track to improve, both riders returned aboard their Husqvarna bikes to start working on setting up for dry conditions. These 25 minutes proved profitable for Kent, whose 1:44.782 lap time put him in eighth while Ajo, with a 1:45.423, landed the seventeenth best time.
In the afternoon, the track conditions had further improved thanks to the sun which shone for the first time this weekend on Misano. Niklas Ajo took advantage of the conditions to mark his best result on the Husqvarna this year in a qualifying session, a second place, with a time of 1:42.978 -an excellent lap to set the young rider up for an optimistic race tomorrow. Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo rider Danny Kent ended his qualifying with a final lap of 1:43.491, putting the Britain in sixth on the second row of the grid.
The thirteenth Moto3 round of the season will start tomorrow, at 11.00am. Danny Kent and Niklas Ajo will be looking to finish as high up in the top 10 tomorrow as possible.
Results – Qualifying practice
1. Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 1:42.974
2. Niklas Ajo (Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo) 1:42.978 +0.004
3. Alex Rins (Honda) 1:43.012 +0.038
4. Alex Marquez (Honda) 1:43.163 +0.189
5. Miguel Oliveira (Mahindra) 1:43.298 +0.324
6. Danny Kent (Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo) 1:43.491 +0.517
Niklas Ajo >> Audio (solely for radio use)
”We have to be very happy with this qualifying session because we were not getting a good time. This morning I went out on track very carefully because there were areas were still wet. We are pleased, but we think that tomorrow’s race will be a little crazy. I think there will be a large lead group. I hope to compete well from the front.
I don’t think it’s time to say if I have good pace, because all us riders have had very few dry laps, and everyone has got quicker in the qualification. Still, I have a good feeling with the bike, even when the tyre is a bit worn. We’ll see if we can have a good race.”
Danny Kent >> Audio (solely for radio use)
”I’m pretty happy with the second row we landed. We are in a good position for tomorrow’s start and I’ve felt good on the bike. It wasn’t just one good lap. I was able to ride with very consistent times and that’s what gives me confidence for tomorrow’s race. It will be important to make a good start and catch the front group. The bike feels very good.
The lap time that put me in sixth was on the last lap and with medium tyres. Normally this compound isn’t the best for a fast lap, but we know that for the race it’s the best. I hope to get a good position tomorrow.”