Lights of the Lusail International Circuit were turned on for the first time since the opening round of the 2022 season, after the Qatari venue went through an important transformation, with the asphalt having been completely resurfaced and a brand new paddock having seen the light to welcome Formula 1™ for the first time in October this year. Daniel Holgado managed a ninth position in the combined standing, while Filippo Farioli finished just outside of the provisional Q2 spots, in fifteenth.
If the title is still mathematically possible for Daniel Holgado who is forty-one points away from championship leader Jaume Masia, the Spaniard’s focus realistically lies on the third position as he is tied with David Alonso with just two rounds left. In Practice 1, the young number 96 started to take the temperature of the Lusail International Circuit with a 2’11.293 that placed him thirteenth of the first session. As the night felt and lights were turned on for the first night session of this Qatar Airways Grand Prix of Qatar campaign, a late session lap in 2’08.063 got Holgado a ninth place at the end of the day. He will have a provisional Q2 place to defend on Saturday when the Moto3™ action resumes at 13:30 local time (GMT+3) with Practice 3.
After getting his best result of 2023 last week in Malaysia with an eighth place, Filippo Farioli was straight back at it this afternoon after he closed the first session of his first Qatari campaign with an eleventh place and a best lap in 2’11.047, 0.001 seconds from the top 10. With a positive feeling, the young rookie headed to Practice 2 with good confidence, and continued to take his times down with a best lap in 2’08.480, and he finished the day just outside the top 14, in P15 (+0.047 seconds from Oncu in P14). The pace is there, the feeling and the confidence appear to be there too, so Farioli will be looking forward to Practice 3 tomorrow to try securing another direct Q2 ticket.
“The feeling was not the best I’ve had today, so we had to try managing this and understanding why we struggled more than usual in Practice 1. In P2, the team did a good job with the bike because the feeling was much better, so we are progressing. We have a very important tomorrow with P3 and the qualifying, so we will try to prepare the best bike possible in order for me to be competitive.”
“It was a positive day for us because we have improved a lot in the two sessions. We could have done a better lap time, but somehow when I tried to push for a bit more, I was losing the front, so we will need to check why. Overall feeling with the bike was decent today, and I am happy with the job done, let’s continue tomorrow.”