The Energica-powered FIM Enel MotoE World Cup made its on-track return today at Misano World Circuit for the second of two back-to-back racing weekends on the technical Italian track – an #EmiliaRomagnaGP that, with two individual races, will be crucial for the title aspirations of teams and riders involved. Today was a more important Friday than usual, as the two races in one weekend mean no FP3 for the stars of the all-electric class of MotoGP, who will head directly into E-Pole tomorrow morning at 11:45 local time (GMT +2).
After two extremely hard-fought free practice sessions, Eric Granado (Avintia Esponsorama Racing) topped the combined timesheets courtesy of a stellar 1’42.910secs lap-time. The young Brazilian rider set a new MotoE lap record for the track and was the first-ever (and currently only) rider to break the 1’43secs barrier aboard an Energica Ego Corsa at the Italian venue. Following a disappointing outcome in the previous round, which was heavily affected by a disastrous qualifying (his E-Pole time was cancelled due to exceeding track limits), Granado cannot leave anything to chance if he wants to keep his title hopes alive at the end of his Italian trip.
Local stars Alex De Angelis (OCTO Pramac MotoE) and reigning world cup champion Matteo Ferrari (Team Trentino Gresini MotoE) were separated by 0.045secs in second and third, both showing great pace by lapping consistently in the low-mid 1’43secs, with Jordi Torres (Pons Racing 40) in fourth followed by Xavier Simeon (LCR E-Team). The Belgian rider, who was extremely quick in FP1, crashed out at turn one in the afternoon but was fortunately uninjured in the process.
Sixth place went to a Tommaso Marcon on great form (Tech 3 E-Racing), with current series leader Dominique Aegerter (Dynavolt IntactGP) seventh and closely tailed by Mike Di Meglio (EG0,0 Marc VDS), Marcon’s teammate Lukas Tulovic and Alessandro Zaccone (Team Trentino Gresini MotoE), who completed the top ten.
All eyes are now set on tomorrow morning’s E-Pole, which unlike last year will decide only the starting grid for tomorrow’s opening race – which will get underway at 16:20 – with the results of the latter determining the grid for Sunday’s race two.