GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3 was looking forward to Super Saturday in front of its home crowd with the qualifying sessions in the morning, and the Tissot Sprint later on in the afternoon. If the weather was a bit cloudy after the rain for qualifying, the sun was completely out for the Tissot Sprint at 15:00 (GMT+2). The morning was highlighted by Augusto Fernandez reaching Q2 for the first time, before the afternoon was tainted by a double DNF at the Tissot Sprint.
In the morning, both Augusto Fernandez and Jonas Folger had the Free Practice session to get ready for qualifying. The rookie finished the session in P9 with a fastest lap in 1’32.639, while his teammate Folger rode in 1’34.220. Augusto’s pace since yesterday had been quite impressive for the first time on the Bugatti circuit with a MotoGP machine, and he continued to impress in the first qualifying session. If he admitted yesterday that there was margin to progress on time-attacks, he certainly meant business as he rode his fastest lap of the weekend, in 1’31.343 and finished in P2 of the session, just 0.075 seconds from the fastest rider of the session. In a packed Q2, he did the best he could but did not manage to get his lap time down, so his best lap of 1’31.596 meant that he got the P12, his best qualifying result of the season in what is only the fifth round of his rookie season. For teammate Jonas Folger, he continued to give all he could on the RC16. He rode faster than in the morning, in 1’33.605 and finished twenty-first.
In the afternoon, the sun was out in Le Mans just in time for the Tissot Sprint. From P12, Augusto Fernandez took a rather ok start but then eventually went wide a couple of corners after the start and lost many positions. He re-focused quickly to try recovering from the positions lost, but eventually he lost the front and crashed in lap 5, a great shame for Fernandez who had just had an amazing morning in qualifying. For Jonas Folger, it was a similar situation. He took a good start and settled well into his race pace. He also lost the front in Turn 7 of lap 8. It is a double DNF for the GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3 team, who is always looking forward to Sunday’s race.