Heroic Johann Zarco Seals Front Row Start For Home GP

He sends home crowd wild with a superb qualifying performance

johann zarco french gp qualifying
Johann Zarco, Grand Prix of France Qualifying 2017Courtesy of Monster Yamaha Tech3

Monster Yamaha Tech3 team rider Johann Zarco sent his home crowd wild with a superb qualifying performance to clinch 3rdon the grid for the Grand Prix de France tomorrow. The local hero produced the ride of the day after challenging in Q1, where he notably completed ten high-speed laps without pitting, as he snatched entrance to Qualifying 2 in the final moments. Then in Q2, he stormed to his impressive time at the end of the session to complete an all-Yamaha front row and seal his first top three qualifying position in the premier class.

Meanwhile, Jonas Folger will kick off the 5th round of the Championship from 15th on the grid after a determined display in qualifying. Despite a big fall in FP4, the young German picked himself up to bravely contest in Q1. Here, he built up his pace and eventually powered across the finish line to seal the fifth-row start, yet his lap time would have placed him on the second row of the grid in Q2. Nevertheless, tomorrow he intends to undertake a rocket start and then obtain a strong result at the Tech3 team’s home Grand Prix.

Johann ZARCO
Position: 3rd - Time: 1'32.229 - Laps: 6

"The result is fantastic and I am delighted to qualify on the front row for my home race, even if I didn’t expect it. Before the qualifying, I was a bit nervous because of my fall this morning, but I ran a decent pace in FP4 which gave me my confidence back. Then in Q1, I was able to improve my time in the final run and I went on to finish in P2, which was great. After that, in Qualifying 2, I only had one rear tyre that I could use so I waited for a bit, but I watched the pace of my opponents and this encouraged me because I knew that I could do a good job. Eventually, both sessions went really well for me and now I will enjoy this moment because the fans were superb today and they want a podium tomorrow but so do I. Yet, being fast this afternoon gives me the confidence for this, plus the bike was perfect today and the team did a good job. In the race, I plan to stay with the top guys but you have to be calm in order to be fast here in Le Mans so I need to control my emotions and be strong at the start. Then I will fight and hopefully get a podium and if I achieve this, it will be truly awesome."

jonas folger french gp qualifying
Jonas Folger, Grand Prix of France Qualifying 2017Courtesy of Monster Yamaha Tech3

Jonas FOLGER
Position: 15th - Time: 1'32.695 - Laps: 8

"It was a strange day and I think that maybe I was a bit unlucky because my personal best was positive and when we compare the results, you can see that my time would have put me in 6th. This is a shame but anyway Johann made it into Q2 and set a really good lap and we can see that the Yamaha suits this track very well, so even if I was a bit unlucky today, nothing is lost for tomorrow. I had a small crash in FP4 and this made me lose some confidence but fortunately, I am ok and I still did my best in Q1. Now I have to prepare for the race where I aim to undertake a solid start and then I will ride a consistent pace so that I can gain a lot of positions and finish my team’s home Grand Prix strongly."

For more information: motogp.teamtech3.fr

STARTING GRID

FRONT ROW
1. M. VIÑALES MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP 1'31.994
2. V. ROSSI MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP 1'32.100
3. J. ZARCO MONSTER YAMAHA TECH3 1'32.229 |
SECOND ROW
4. C. CRUTCHLOW LCR HONDA 1'32.300
5. M. MARQUEZ REPSOL HONDA TEAM 1'32.493
6. A. DOVIZIOSO DUCATI TEAM 1'32.726
THIRD ROW
7. S. REDDING OCTO PRAMAC RACING 1'33.119
8. P. ESPARGARÒ RED BULL KTM FACTORY RACING 1'33.399
9. K. ABRAHAM PULL&BEAR ASPAR TEAM 1'33.517
FOURTH ROW
10. B. SMITH RED BULL KTM FACTORY RACING 1'33.629
11. J. MILLER TEAM EG 0,0 MARC VDS 1'33.756
12. L. BAZ REALE AVINTIA RACING 1'33.955
FIFTH ROW
13. D. PEDROSA REPSOL HONDA TEAM 1'32.415
14. A. BAUTISTA PULL&BEAR ASPAR TEAM 1'32.484
15. J. FOLGER MONSTER YAMAHA TECH3 1'32.695
SIXTH ROW
16. J. LORENZO DUCATI TEAM 1'32.830
17. A. IANNONE TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'32.844
18. A. ESPARGARÒ APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI 1'33.187
SEVENTH ROW
19. D. PETRUCCI OCTO PRAMAC RACING 1'33.231
20. H. BARBERA REALE AVINTIA RACING 1'33.233
21. S. LOWES APRILIA RACING TEAM GRESINI 1'33.817
EIGHTH ROW
22. T. RABAT TEAM EG 0,0 MARC VDS 1'33.875
23. S. GUINTOLI TEAM SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'34.082