Moto3 and Moto2 round-up- Austin: Debut pole for Oettl, Rins remains ahead after red flag.

The third race of the 2016 season sees the paddock move on to Austin, Texas and the changeable weather at the Circuit of the Americas played a big part in qualifying.

UPDATE: The Moto2 session was halted to attend to an injured Efren Vazquez, who was unconscious at the scene, before regaining consciousness and then being removed by ambulance, then transferred to hospital by helicopter where he will remain under observation for head trauma for today and tomorrow.

Here’s how the sessions panned out.

2016 Rins Austin Americas
Leading the way :Alex Rins      Photo: Pons Racing



The first class to qualify found their session interrupted by rain with those who banked an early lap remaining ahead as gains were near impossible after the local downpour.

Philipp Oettl had made the biggest gains before the rain hit, chipping away at his own top time lap after lap, with the Schedl GP Racing KTM rider remaining on top until the end, his best of 2m 18.398s remaining unbeaten.

His closest rival was Honda man Jorge Navarro, speeding up to attack the German’s dominance to finish fast for second for Estrella Galicia 0,0.The front row is completed by Enea Bastianini for Gresini.

Drive M7 Sic rider Jakub Kornfeil continues to improve and impress in fourth, his team mate Adam Norrodin who crashed out at the end of the last race in Argentina starts sixth, and is the top rookie. Romano Fenati (Sky Racing Team VR46) sits between them on the grid in fifth.

Andrea Locatelli (Leopard Racing) is seventh, Jules Danilo (Ongetta-Rivacold) eighth, Fabio Quartararo ninth(Leopard Racing) and Livio Loi tenth.

Many big names can be found further down the grid after getting caught out by the rain: championship leader Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) starts 12th Qatar winner Nico Antonelli 30th and Argentina winner Khairul Idham Pawi 32nd .

John McPhee faired better in the wet and is 17th for the Peugeot MC Saxoprint Mahindra team.


Moto3 was defined by the weather but Moto2 was affected by the well executed red flag to deal with the crash of Efren Vazquez. Once the Spaniard was safely removed and on his way to hospital the final ten minutes became a superpole-like shootout for the best time, but no-one was able to topple Alex Rins best from early in the session.

The Paginas Amarillas HP 40 rider had broken his own circuit record, set just the day before in practice, long before the delay and the fast 2m 08.880s lap held true to the chequered flag despite his rivals all improving. Rins was very consistent and showed good race pace, coming close on many occasions to bettering himself.

A fast last dash by Johann Zarco secured second for the reigning champion and his Ajo Motorsport team. That knocked Brit Sam Lowes down one place on his Gresini, though he too was pleased by his consistency.

Dominique Aegerter returned to grace row two in fourth for Interwetten. He is joined by his team-mate Tom Luthi in fifth and Taka Nakagami (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) who’s last lap propelled him back up to sixth.

Jonas Folger (Dynavolt Intact GP) and Simone Corsi (Speed Up) fought it out on track and for times with the German just ahead for seventh.

Franco Morbidelli starts ninth for EG0,0 Marc VDS, with Sandro Cortese on the second Dynavolt entry completing the top ten.

Danny Kent starts 16th for Leopard. His team-mate Miguel Oliveira was the best rookie performer in 20th.

For the full Moto3 result click here.

For the full Moto2 result click here.


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