Fieten Olie Racing GP has qualified in tenth place with Barry Baltus and in seventeenth place with Zonta van den Goorbergh on Saturday afternoon of the Catalan Grand Prix. Van den Goorbergh secured a direct spot in Q2 in the morning and posted the seventeenth time in that session, Baltus had to come through Q1 and managed to clock an impressive tenth lap time.
The Catalan Grand Prix at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya started well for Fieten Olie Racing GP. After a challenging start on Friday in hot conditions, both riders performed very well on Saturday. In the third practice session on Saturday morning, Zonta van den Goorbergh secured a direct place in Q2 for the second weekend in a row. Barry Baltus had a bit more trouble with riding a quick lap time and therefore had to go to Q1.
In that session the Belgian rider handled the pressure well and still managed to secure a place in Q2. In the decisive second qualifying session, Baltus eventually managed to set the tenth fastest lap time just 0.330 seconds from pole position. Van den Goorbergh was forced to use the hard-compound rear tyre but still managed to set the seventeenth fastest time, just 0.894 seconds off the fastest time.
Barry Baltus – P10: “It wasn’t a great day overall but the afternoon was good. This morning I made a couple of mistakes and on my fastest lap I closed the throttle. That was a mistake from my side and the reason why we didn’t go straight to Q2. Then we had to go to Q1 and it was really tight. We decided to use two tyres, which was a bit of a risk, but we managed to get through to Q2. My first two laps were very good that put us in tenth place. It was a very good lap and we were only 0,3 seconds away from pole so I think we can have a good race tomorrow. We need to stay on the bike and try to not make any mistakes with the low grip we have here. It will be a difficult race but I think we can manage.”
Zonta van den Goorbergh – P17: “We started the day well this morning with direct placement for Q2. We were very happy with that because the differences are very small this weekend. Unfortunately we only had a hard tyre left for qualifying, despite that I gave everything and surprised myself on some parts of the track. In the end we finished 0.9 seconds from pole position, which is not bad but that doesn't put us where I had hoped to be. Now it's all focus on the race and we hope to get a good result tomorrow."
Jarno Janssen – Fieten Olie Racing GP team manager: “We had a very good day today in Barcelona. Zonta performed excellently in the third practice this morning and, as in Austria, went straight through to Q2. That not only gave him and the team a boost but also reassurance because even in Q1, the racing is incredibly tough and you don't just finish within the first four positions. This was not the case for Barry as he did have to go to Q1 and try to get to Q2 there. Fortunately he succeeded even though it was really extremely close.
In the end we were in Q2 with both riders but then it becomes a bit of a gamble in terms of tyres, also it is very important which group you are in. Barry had a very good pace on the hard tyre but unfortunately couldn't repeat it on the soft tyre so he finished tenth.
Zonta only had one tyre at his disposal and despite that he finished less than 0.9 seconds from pole position. It was a good day for both riders and now we are looking forward to tomorrow. We are in a good rhythm with both riders and the team so I am curious to see what will happen tomorrow."
The 21-lap Moto2 race at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya will start at 12:15pm on Sunday afternoon.