Aug 12, 2011
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Florian Alt (66). Photo by GEPA Pictures, courtesy of Red Bull
Florian Alt put in the perfect lap to take pole position for the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup this weekend in Brno at the Cardion ab Grand Prix of the Czech Republic. The 15 year old German stole the top spot in the last few laps from 18 year old local hero Tomas Vavrous and Cup favourite, Australian 16 year old, Arthur Sissis.
"I was feeling good on the bike, and I just got into the perfect position to pick up the slipstream on that lap and made the best use of it," explained Alt after his first pole in Rookies Cup. "We had to make a few changes to the rear suspension through practice, both after the free practice this morning and between the qualifying sessions. It's a good track I really enjoy it."
Vavrous was happy to repeat the mid front row start that he achieved at the previous round at the Sachsenring. "I was surprised though, normally I know when I have done a good lap but this time I didn't realise it, it was nice surprise when I saw it on the board. After that though I was making a few too many mistakes. I like the track here but I must say that racing at home isn't so much fun, there is too much pressure. I hope to be in the top 3 tomorrow but we'll see."
At the end of the session Sissis was in serious pain. "My neck hurts from crashing a go-cart two weeks ago in Austria. I had some physio and that made it a lot better but still when I'm tucked down behind the screen and trying to look forward it hurts," Said Sissis who was fastest in the first qualifying session but was one of the few to not improve in the 2nd period though he did almost match his previous best.
"I tried at the end but my neck was hurting so much I just couldn't concentrate. I like the track though and the bike improved a lot after the morning session. They changed the front suspension, it was a bit hard to turn in the afternoon but they say that is because of the wind more than anything. It is a lot more fun here than last year, I know how much my riding has improved because I can do a good lap time on my own, last year I would have to follow someone or I would be all over the place."
His arch rival and Cup leader by 6 points, Lorenzo Baldassarri, sits behind him on the 2nd row after qualifying 5th, a big improvement from 11th in the 1st session. "I am happy with that, I had a problem with the engine in the 1st session as it wouldn't rev past 13,000 but they changed the gearing for the 2nd session and the rear suspension so it was quite a bit better," explained the 15 year old Italian. "We changed the rear after this morning but it was too hard for the first qualifying so we had to go back a bit. I took the morning to learn the track and really enjoyed it from the start, very different to the Sachsenring, wider, faster, more fun."
Alan Techer was thrilled to be ahead of him having qualified 4th with his last lap but it was a painful experience. "I had a slide and hit my right foot on the tarmac, the same foot I hurt quite badly riding at home 2 weeks ago. It was painful then and it is now. The bike is good now though we lowered the front a bit and it holds the line better so I am looking forward to the race even though I might be able to walk much this weekend."
There are just 3 races remaining the 2011 Rookies Cup, the first being on Saturday at 16.30 CET with Sunday's race at 15.30. Both can be seen on TV in many countries and are webcast live on with the shows beginning 10 minutes before race start.
1. Florian Alt (GER) 2 minutes 13.644 seconds
2. Tomas Vavrous (CZE) +0.004
3. Arthur Sissis (AUS) +0.239
4. Alan Techer (FRA) +0.262
5. Lorenzo Baldassarri (ITA) +0.364
6. Xavier Pinsach (ESP) +0.370
7. Ivo Lopes (POR) +0.511
8. James Flitcroft (GBR) +0.634
9. Lukas Trautmann (AUT) +0.723
10. Joakim Niemi (FIN) +0.863
17. Joe Roberts (USA), +1.306