Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Raul Fernandez claimed top spot on the timesheets at the close of the opening day of the 2020 Moto3 World Championship, just 0.018 of a second adrift of Aron Canet’s fastest-ever lightweight lap around the Losail International Circuit.
All but four of the Moto3 contenders improved on their FP1 lap, including Friday morning’s second-fastest rider Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse), as the sun began to set in the Doha desert, as FP1’s pacesetter Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) slipped back to third quickest.
Separating the two talented Spanish teenagers in the top three was South African Darryn Binder (CIP Green Power), who ended just over a tenth away from Fernandez’s 2’04.577.
Honda Team Asia’s Ai Ogura was again just outside the fastest three in fourth, thanks to his final lap of the session, with compatriot and former teammate Kaito Toba a place further back in fifth.
Rivacold Snipers Team’s Tony Arbolino was the first man not to dip beneath the 2:05 barrier in sixth place, just ahead of fellow Italian Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46).
Leopard Racing’s Jaume Masia was three-quarters of a second away from top spot in eighth ahead of Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) and Friday’s fastest rookie Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech 3).
Fellow rookies Yuki Kunii (Honda Team Asia) and Carlos Tatay (Reale Avintia Racing) provisionally claimed the final Q2 spots in 13th and 14th place.
Britain’s John McPhee finished in 11th place, eight-tenths off the pace.