Second starting row in Austria for Lüthi
Tom Lüthi narrowly missed the front row in an extremely exciting qualifying session for the eleventh race of the season. The Swiss will tackle the Austrian Grand Prix from fifth place, while Marcel Schrötter crashed again and ended up in 16th position.
15 qualifying minutes are just a short period of time in which everything has to fit perfectly. Especially on the stop-and-go course in Styria, where the distances are extremely close, every smallest mistake can cost many positions.
In Tom Lüthi's hot qualifying session on the Red Bull Ring everything worked as planned. After a short tyre change the Swiss started his final chase five minutes before the end. From tenth place he caught up with a lap of 1'28.924 to two tenths behind the first, the Japanese Tetsuta Nagashima, and missed the front row by only 0.068 seconds. Nevertheless, with position five, the World Championship runner-up has a much better starting position for the 25 lap race on Sunday in Austria than at the Sachsenring or in Brünn a week ago.
Of course Marcel Schrötter also wanted to be much further ahead than he will finally be on tomorrow's grid. But unfortunately the 26-year-old crashed in qualifying for the third time this weekend. Again he lost the front, this time in corner six. This happened when eight minutes were still displayed on the time monitors. Four minutes later his crew had already fixed the Intact GP-Kalex and sent the Bavarian back on track. This left him with exactly two flying laps to catch up in the ranking. But with a time of 1'29.437 he could not do much more and stayed on 16th place, which meant row six. Before the race Marcel Schrötter and his crew will still have the tomorrow's warm-up session in the morning to improve his feeling for the front of the bike.
1. Mattia PASINI / ITA / KALEX - 1'28.811
2. Alex MARQUEZ / SPA / KALEX - 1'28.919 (+0.108)
3. Enea BASTIANINI / ITA / KALEX - 1'28.949 (+0.138)
5. Thomas LUTHI / SWI / KALEX - 1'28.988 (+0.177)
6. Marcel SCHROTTER / GER / KALEX - 1'29.032 (+0.221)
1. Tetsuta NAGASHIMA / JPN / KALEX - 1'28.718
2. Brad BINDER / RSA / KTM - 1'28.791 (+0.073)
3. Somkiat CHANTRA / THA / KALEX - 1'28.856 (+0.138)
5. Thomas LUTHI / SWI / KALEX - 1'28.924 (+0.206)
16. Marcel SCHROTTER / GER / KALEX - 1'29.437 (+0.719)