Results and summary of the Moto3 race at Jerez:
Romano Fenati has taken an utterly dominant victory under treacherous conditions to take charge of the Moto3 championship. The Italian kept his head while all around him lost theirs, going on to win by over 36 seconds.
The weather has been the star of the show at Jerez so far, and will be a factor again today. Heavy overnight rain has soaked the track, and the lighter rain which followed is starting to move away. The track was fully wet for the Moto3 warm up, and Moto2 is out on a quickly drying track. MotoGP faces the same half-and-half conditions that have plagued them all weekend, putting them in a spot with rain tires.
The best forecast at the moment is that light showers may fall throughout any of the three races. It should be largely dry, but the track is going to be greasy. Ducati's prayers for rain have gone unanswered.
Writing about MotoGP is hard at the moment. There are so many great stories to tell - the astonishing rise of Romano Fenati out of nowhere in Moto3, the legion of Kalexes taking on Marc Marquez in Moto2, the frenetic pace of development among the CRT machines, the ascendancy of Dani Pedrosa as a challenger for Jorge Lorenzo and Casey Stoner, the rebirth of Cal Crutchlow as a serious force to be reckoned with, the HRC design gaffe that left the RC213V seriously afflicted by chatter, just to name a few - but it is hard to get around to telling them. Because the vast majority of fans only want to read about one single subject: the enigma of Valentino Rossi's continuing battle with the Ducati Desmosedici, and his fall from championship contender to mid-pack straggler.
Each race adds another chapter to the epic saga that Rossi's problems have become, and the weekend of the Spanish Grand Prix is no exception. It is a tale that needs to be told, however tiresome it may have become to some, and I shall return to later on. But first, we have three fascinating sessions of qualifying which need attention.
The weather is still a key player at Jerez, the rain slowly dying out after lunchtime, leaving different conditions for all three classes. For Moto3, it was pretty much wet, and for Moto2, it was just about completely dry, with MotoGP once again left to suffer in between. Fortunately, the track was drying quickly, with only a few damp patches right at the very end.
Results and summary of qualifying for the Moto3 class at Jerez:
Alex Rins has secured his maiden Moto3 pole at Jerez, after a drying track saw a thrilling final few minutes of qualifying, with pole swapping hands several times. The Spanish rookie timed his final run to perfection, in the final seconds of the session on a track that was almost completely dry.
With the weather a little more settled in Jerez on Saturday morning - it rained for most of the night, and the track is now fully wet - practice returned to some semblance of normality. Miguel Oliveira's dominance of Moto3 in the wet continued, topping the FP3 session by over a second with a fast flying lap at the very end. The Portuguese rider deposed former Red Bull Rookie Arthur Sissis from top spot, the young Australian being demoted to 2nd, just ahead of Danny Kent, though Kent could have gone faster if he hadn't got engaged in an altercation with RW Racing's Luis Salom.
Miguel Oliveira topped the wet second session of free practice for the Moto3 class at Jerez, the Portuguese rider taking the lead as the times dropped towards the end of the session. Red Bull KTM's Sandro Cortese ended up in 2nd spot, just a few thousandths ahead of Maverick Vinales on the Blusens Avintia FTR Honda.
Romano Fenati continues to impress on his debut in the Moto3 class, the European 125cc champion topping the first session of free practice at Jerez. Fenati led throughout, leaving title favorite Maverick Vinales to settle for the 2nd fastest time, a quarter of a second behind Fenati. Sandro Cortese was the first of the KTMs, taking 3rd, some half a second off the time of the FTR Honda of Fenati, while Miguel Oliveira ended the session in 4th.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams ahead of this weekend's race at Jerez:
Top five the target for Redding and Kallio in Jerez