Andrea Migno set a lap time 2 seconds faster than the rest to get pole, after sticking with his slick tyres on a track that was half dry and half wet.
Track conditions were dry at the start of Q1, as World Championship leader and rookie Pedro Acosta rolled out of pitlane with the rest of the field. Tatsuki Suzuki was also in Q1, with Dennis Foggia and Jeremy Alcoba.
Leopard Racing’s Xavier Artigas was in the medical centre at the start of the session, following his FP3 crash. Initially, we thought it was his wrist, which he has injured, but the cause of his absence was a bang to the head.
In the first bunch of flying laps, Kaito Toba set the pace as Acosta worked his way through to the front of the pack. Acosta had a huge moment between turns 12 and 13, as the back end came around on him and launched him up out of the seat. He rode his bucking bronco and managed to regain control.
Yuki Kunii worked his way into to the Top 4, but as he started his next lap, he had a big high side in the middle of the first chicane. He was dumped on to the French tarmac and looked rather dazed as he got up.
Acosta had another moment out of Museum Curve, losing a foot off the foot peg. He was pushing very hard and didn’t look his cool and collected self. He was in a very precarious 3rd place with a minute to go.
The last dash to the line saw Tatsuki Suzuki take first, followed by Dennis Foggia, Filip Salac and Jeremy Alcoba. Pedro Acosta starts in 21st place after finishing the session in 9th, but we all know he can carve through the field and looked good in the wet this morning.
As Q2 started, the dark clouds rolled in and the rain started, so all of the riders rushed onto the track to try and get a lap in before the heavens properly opened.
The first crashers were Niccolo Antonelli and Riccardo Rossi, after Rossi rear ended Antonelli’s bike, sending them both down the road at the Bleu Esses. Andrea Migno tried to risk a lap on slicks in the rain, but realised half way around that the risk wasn’t worth the gain. So he trundled back round to the pits.
With 9 minutes to go, the field returned to the track with wet tyres on, but the circuit was wet on one half and dry on the other, so very tricky.
Red Bull KTM Tech3 rider Ayumu Sasaki had a spill at Turn 10 and returned to the pits. The first lap time was set with 6 minutes left in the session. The early leader was Argentinian Gabriel Rodrigo, but he was knocked from the top spot by Deniz Oncu who seems to be coming to the front, where he belongs.
Andrea Migno was really pushing, and was incredibly fast. A slow-motion replay saw him with slicks on, and was very brave in the wet parts of the track and very fast on the dry. His teammate Filip Salac had a whopping high side between 13 and 14, and was ejected out of the front door into the gravel.
BOE Owlride rider Riccardo Rossi set an amazing lap time to temporarily go top, but Migno blew the rest out of the water, setting a lap 2 seconds faster than the rest of the field. So, Rossi was demoted to 2nd place.
Jaume Masia completed the front row, just in front of John McPhee in 4th. That’s a little bit more like it from the Scot, hoping for a good start into the first set of esses tomorrow. Gabri Rodrigo was 5th and Niccolo Antonelli ended up 6th after being rammed by Riccardo Rossi.
The weather is set to be wet and cold tomorrow, so all to play for in France. With the championship leader in 21st and an on-form Andrea Migno up the sharp end, we are set to have a tense race tomorrow.
The Moto3 Race will begin at 11:00 Local Time (GMT +2), and will be the first race of the day, as MotoE has been rescheduled for 15:30 Local Time.
Feature Image: MotoGP.com