After a difficult start in free practice sessions, Dominique Aegerter missed out the top spot on the starting grid by just one thousandth of a second on Friday afternoon.
The second race weekend of the electric bike series began in unusually good weather for this time of year in the Pays de Loire region in western France. However, MotoE riders and teams had to contest their first free practice session early in the morning when it was still very cool. Despite plenty of sunshine, it took until lunch time for the conditions at Le Mans to become more pleasant and usable in terms of bike set-up. It was not until the afternoon that temperatures climbed above the 20-degree mark, when qualifying heats were on today’s timetable.
Dominique Aegerter, who arrived at the historic Bugatti Circuit in second place overall, had to contend with some teething problems in cool temperatures. Closing FP1 in ninth place, 31-year-old Swiss rider improved by one position in free practice two, which meant he made it through Q2 directly. In these 15 minutes long session, in which the best grid positions are decided, Aegerter made it exciting until the last moment. In his final attack he set best times in each sector but was 0.001 seconds short of pole position on the line. Nevertheless, the starting position from the front row is very promising for race no three and four respectively.
Both races of the weekend will be broadcast by SRF via livestream on srf.ch/sport and in the SRFsport app. The broadcast will begin ten minutes before the start in each case.
#77 Dominique AEGERTER (Dynavolt Intact GP, Energica)
Grid position: P2 - 1´43.460 (6/6)
"Our qualifying was almost perfect. We were only one ridiculous thousandth of a second short of pole position. But we can also be satisfied with second place on the grid, as we start from the front row in both races. My thanks go to the Dynavolt Intact GP team because they did a fantastic job. In the morning during the first practice in cool conditions I could not build up a feeling for the track and the bike. But my crew gave me an excellent support to make me feel more comfortable. With every lap the confidence has come back, and I got faster and faster."
"In the races, the starts have to be successful so that we are in the group right from the beginning and achieve a top result at the end. My goal is to fight for the podium, or if possible, for victory. I am ready and determined to give my all for that, especially as it is so nice that so many French fans came to the track as early as Friday. They even stayed until our qualifying sessions in the late afternoon. Hopefully that will be the same on Saturday and Sunday as well, so they will be cheering us in the races too. I will do my best to not disappoint them. Before that, I want to thank all our sponsors and supporters who help us to be here."
#FrenchGP - MotoE™ Combined Free Practice Times (FP1/FP2):
1 Jordi TORRES / SPA / Pons Racing 40 / Energica / 1´44.288 (FP2)
2 Matteo FERRARI / ITA / Felo Gresini MotoE / Energica / 1´44.402 +0.114 (FP2)
3 Kevin ZANNONI / ITA / Ongetta SIC58 Squadracorse / Energica / 1´44.429 +0.141 (FP2)
8 #77 Dominique AEGERTER / SWI / Dynavolt Intact GP / Energica / 1´44.833 +0.545 (FP2)
#FrenchGP - MotoE™ Qualifying Results:
1 Mattia CASADEI / ITA / Pons Racing 40 / Energica / 1´43.559
2 #77 Dominique AEGERTER / SWI / Dynavolt Intact GP / Energica / 1´43.560 +0.001
3 Kevin ZANNONI / ITA / Ongetta SIC58 Squadracorse / Energica / 1´43.580 +0.020
#FrenchGP - MotoE™ Time Schedule for Saturday May 14th (CET):
16:25 Race 1 (8 Laps - 33.480 km)