Veijer snatches second row for the Portuguese Grand Prix

With grid position six on row two, LIQUI MOLY Husqvarna Intact GP rider Collin Veijer has a good chance of scoring points in the second Grand Prix of the year, while Moto3 team-mate Tatsuki Suzuki will also be looking to score points from 20th on the grid.

The breathtaking Autodromo Internacional do Algarve near the coastal town of Portimao is known for its up- and downhill sections surrounded by picturesque landscapes. But the weather can also be a little capricious from time to time, and overnight rain on Thursday night not only meant wet tarmac in the morning, but also a lot of sand that was washed onto the track from the air. As a result, the Moto3 free practice session had to be cancelled without replacement due to precautionary measures.

This had little effect on Dutch rider Collin Veijer, as the 19-year-old adopted his usual strategy. During the first qualifying sessions, Veijer was still in the midfield due to precise set-up work on his Husqvarna, with his 1'48.147 being enough to move straight into Qualifying 2. On Saturday afternoon, in Q2, the youngster was well in the mix and ultimately achieved a strong starting position for the 19-lap race on Sunday with sixth place on row two. The rider with start number 95 was just 0.495s off pole man Jose Antonio Rueda.

Tatsuki Suzuki, meanwhile, experienced a déjà vu from the Qatar GP, as the Japanese rider also narrowly missed out on Q2 a fortnight ago. In Portimao, the 26-year-old was just four tenths off the Q1 fastest rider, compatriot Ryusei Yamanaka. Conversely, this means grid position 20 on row seven. Certainly not an easy task that the experienced rider has set himself for the second round of the season, but in Qatar he proved that a lot is possible with a good start and as long as he can squeeze the maximum out of himself and his Moto3 machine again, the top 15 should be achievable. 

The goals for the Portuguese Grand Prix are to finish in the points in both cases, so it is now a matter of making the final preparations together with the crews of the German racing team and then focussing fully on the start of the race on Sunday at 12:00 (CET).


1.   David ALONSO/ COL/ CFMOTO – 1'47.202
2.   Joel KELSO/ AUS/ KTM – 1'47.239 (+0.037)
3.   Matteo BERTELLE/ ITA/ HONDA – 1'47.881 (+0.679)
15. Collin VEIJER/ NED/ HUSQVARNA – 1'48.822 (+1.620)
20. Tatsuki SUZUKI/ JPN/ HUSQVARNA – 1'49.322 (+2.120)

1.   Joel KELSO/ AUS/ KTM – 1'47.175
2.   Jose Antonio RUEDA/ SPA/ KTM – 1'47.322 (+0.147)
3.   David ALONSO/ COL/ CFMOTO – 1'47.486 (+0.311)
12. Collin VEIJER/ NED/ HUSQVARNA – 1'48.147 (+0.972)
19. Tatsuki SUZUKI/ JPN/ HUSQVARNA – 1'48.805 (+1.630)

1. Ryusei YAMANAKA/ JPN/ KTM – 1'47.979
2. Nicola CARRARO/ ITA/ KTM – 1'48.104 (+0.125)
3. Filippo FARIOLI/ ITA/ HONDA – 1'48.256 (+0.277)
6. Tatsuki SUZUKI/ JPN/ HUSQVARNA – 1'48.381 (+0.402)

1. Jose Antonio RUEDA/ SPA/ KTM – 1'46.379
2. Joel KELSO/ AUS/ KTM – 1'46.438 (+0.059)
3. David ALONSO/ COL/ CFMOTO – 1'46.497 (+0.118)
6. Collin VEIJER/ NED/ HUSQVARNA – 1'46.874 (+0.495)