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Ogura leads the Junior Talent Team attack in Albacete

13 Oct 2018

Japanese rider heads up an all-JTT Row 3 for the penultimate round

There’s just one race at Albacete for the penultimate round of the Moto3™ Junior World Championship and much of the Junior Talent Team will be heading into the battle from Row 3 after another solid Saturday. Under sunny skies and with seasonable temperatures, the qualifying session was a successful one – and close – with Ai Ogura just edging out teammates Yuki Kunii and Somkiat Chantra to take P7 and head up an all-JTT third row.

Ogura’s best time was a 1:34.391 to put him just 0.032 off Row 2, and he was just 0.005 ahead of Jerez race winner Kunii, who lines up in eighth. Chantra was also close company and the Thai rider was only a further 0.045 in arrears in P9. They’ll all be aiming big on Sunday with Ogura fresh from race-winning pace at Jerez, Kunii fresh from his maiden victory at the Andalusian track and Chantra heading back to Albacete after a stunning wildcard appearance in the Moto3™ World Championship in his home Grand Prix. The first timer came ninth at Buriram and made it a debut to remember.

Last time out in the FIM CEV Repsol, meanwhile, Tom Booth-Amos made it a round to remember as he took his first points following a season largely marred by injury. The British Talent Team rider kept the momentum rolling in Albacete to qualifying P13, just 0.014 off twelfth. He’ll be aiming for points and the top ten on race day – fresh from a deal to move to the Grand Prix paddock next season.

Finally, Gerry Salim was in a tight midfield as he qualified P23, and the Indonesian will again be gunning for the points after coming close last time out and taking a tantalising P16 – with progress the constant aim.

That’s it from Saturday and the forecast looks like it could be very different conditions come race day, so make sure to watch the Junior Talent Team race for the penultimate time this season when the lights go out for the Moto3™ Junior World Championship at 13:00 local time (GMT +2) on Sunday.