MotoGP Valencia: Acosta continues control in Moto2 final practice

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Picture: GeeBee Images

Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Pedro Acosta was back in charge of teammate Augusto Fernandez as the pair dominated Valencia’s Moto2 practice on Saturday.

The rookie sensation set the 1’34.592 pace, 0.066s ahead of Fernandez, with the duo having repeatedly swapped control of the times throughout the 40-minute FP3 session. Flexbox HP40’s Aron Canet claimed third after a late rise, with Inde GasGas Aspar’s Jake Dixon completing the top five.

Final practice for Moto2 saw Mooney VR46’s Celestino Vietti suffering an early turn two crash as the session fired up. Mattia Pasini continued to showcase his experience as a substitute rider for RW Racing with the fourth fastest time and the first rider to improve on Friday’s efforts. Gresini’s Filip Salac, Elf Marc VDS’ Tony Arbolino and Dixon doing likewise behind him in the top seven as Idemitsu Honda’s Ai Ogura, Speed Up’s Fermin Aldeguer and Aspar’s Albert Arenas completed the top ten.

Acosta topped his Friday time by 0.002s after 15 minutes on track to maintain control. Title-challenger Ogura advancing to fourth, three tenths adrift, with Augusto Fernandez yet to improve on his previous best.

The series leader was in control as the second half began after setting a 1’34.903 on his 12th lap of the morning. American Racing’s Cameron Beaubier holding the gateway to promotion, seven tenths behind as countryman Joe Roberts suffered his second crash of the day - having gone down at turns 10 and 14.

Alonso Lopez advanced the pace in the closing seven minutes before Fernandez returned to the lead. Acosta splitting the pair with his 16th lap as he continued KTM’s control of the top two with Aldeguer completing a double team effort in the top four on the second Boscoscuro machine.

Ogura and Canet sat fifth and sixth as the clock counted down. Dixon dropped to ninth ahead of Marc VDS replacement Senna Agius, Intact GP’s Marcel Shorter and Arbolino with Vietti and Arenas holding the final promotion places.

Italtrans’ Lorenzo Dalla Porta hit seventh, at the expense of Arenas before a late shuffle found Vietti outside of contention. Dixon advanced to fifth in the final minute as Acosta took charge. Fernandez, Canet and Lopez trailed the rookie with Aldeguer, Ogura, Dalla Porta, Arenas and Beaubier in the top ten. Pasini, Intact GP’s Jeremy Alcoba, Salac and Idemitsu Honda’s Somkiat Chantra securing the final promotion places with Agius the first adrift.

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