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Marc VDS get Qatar weekend off to a flying start

  Date: Tuesday 25 March, 2014
Losail, Qatar Ė 20 March 2014: Tito Rabat got the first race weekend of the season in Qatar off to a flying start, finishing tonightís two free practice sessions in second place and just 0.052s off Takaaki Nakagamiís provisional pole position time.

Mika Kallio posted the fastest lap during tonightís opening free practice but, despite improving his time in the second session, eventually ended the evening tenth on the timesheet.

The top 15 Moto2 riders were separated by less than one second.

Livio Loi missed the Qatar race last season because he was still underage, but the 16-year-old Belgian quickly got to grips with the Losail circuit during tonightís two free practice sessions. An improvement of almost two seconds in FP2 saw Loi finish an impressive 13th, just 1.2s off Romano Fenatiís provisional pole time.

Tito Rabat // 2nd // 2í00.574
ďThe feeling with the bike was good from the start, the pace was fast and I felt comfortable with the lap times. The track was a little bit dirty today, like always on the first day in Qatar, but it will clean up tomorrow and the lap times will improve further. Tomorrow we will look for further improvements, but the good thing is that we only need to make small changes to the setup of the bike to achieve this. Iím happy to finally get the season underway and Iím pleased with how things have gone today here in Qatar.Ē Mika

Kallio // 10th // 2í01.039
ďIn the first session the feeling with the bike was good from the start, on the base setting we refined during preseason testing. My lap times were consistent and itís always good to end the first session at the top of the timesheet. In the second session we used the harder option tyre, as thereís a good chance this will be the race tyre and, again, the lap times were consistent. What I didnít get was a proper flying lap; I was on my fastest lap right at the end, with a red through sector 1, but I got the bike sideways out of turn 10 and lost time. Today was a good way to start the new season and tomorrow we will look for further improvements with the harder option tyre.Ē

Livio Loi // 13th // 2í07.403
ďIím happy with the two practices today. This is a new track for me, so Iím still learning my way around, but my lap times improved with every exit in the first session, despite some mistakes at certain parts of the track. I started the second session where I finished the first and, again, my lap time came down as I got a better feel for the track. For sure there is more to come tomorrow, because I was still making the odd mistake here and there in the last session, but Iím pretty pleased with the progress we made tonight

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