Marquez survives Quartararo threat to take Aragon pole

Marc Marquez pic:

Marc Marquez has qualified on pole position for the Aragon MotoGP despite a late threat from Fabio Quartararo.

The Repsol Honda rider set a personal best 1:47.009s which left him just over three tenths of a second clear of Quartararo, while Maverick Viñales made for two Yamahas on the front row.

Jack Miller was the top Ducati rider in qualifying fourth, one position ahead of Gresini Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro.

Marquez had dominated practice and held a margin of almost eight tenths over the field at the end of the first runs through Qualifying 2, courtesy of a 1:47.050s.

Quartararo (Petronas SRT Yamaha) was also best of the rest at that stage, with Miller (Pramac Ducati) less than three hundredths slower than the Frenchman, in third position.

When they rolled out for their final runs, Marquez shaved 0.041s off the benchmark despite being exactly two tenths slower to the first sector than he was just before pitting.

Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha) found almost half a second relatively to his first run as he provisionally took up second position and Aleix Espargaro looked as though he might pull off a huge shock by going third fastest.

Miller spoiled that for the Aprilia rider moments later when he came through with a 1:47.658s which also demoted Quartararo to fifth.

The chequered flag then came out and although most of the contenders for top spot had given up, Quartararo was going faster to each of the first three sectors than Marquez’s provisional pole lap.

However, that would prove to be something of an illusion given Marquez’s slower first sector and while Quartararo strung together a quartet of personal best splits, he still ended up 0.327s away from #93.

Even so, was good enough for Quartararo to beat his factory Yamaha counterpart by 0.136s, while Valentino Rossi put the second works M1 into sixth position.

Cal Crutchlow (Castrol LCR Honda) was seventh and will be joined on Row 3 by Franco Morbidelli (Petronas SRT Yamaha), who came from Qualifying 1, and Joan Mir (Suzuki Ecstar).

Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) was 1.599s off the pace in 10th, ahead of the other man who went the long way through qualifying in Andrea Iannone (Gresini Honda).

Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) did not qualify at all and was subsequently ruled out of Sunday action due to a broken wrist sustained in a Free Practice 4 highside at the Reverse Corkscrew.

Several big names failed to make it past Qualifying 1, headed up by Alex Rins.

The Suzuki Ecstar rider was initially in the top two cutoff but a second-run switch to a hard rear tyre failed to pay dividends as he qualified 13th, although that will become 12th on the grid in Pol Espargaro’s absence.

Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati) did not look a serious prospect of advancing and is due to start 14th, five positions ahead of Jorge Lorenzo (Repsol Honda).

Mika Kallio, who has taken Johann Zarco’s seat at Red Bull KTM Factory Racing for the balance of the season, ended up 19th in qualifying and therefore 18th on the grid.

Race start is set for the slightly earlier time of 2100 AEST, just before the Formula 1 race, with 23 laps the journey.

Qualifying: Aragon MotoGP

Pos Num Rider Nat Team Bike Time Gap 1st/prev
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda 1:47.009
2 20 Fabio QUARTARARO FRA Petronas Yamaha SRT Yamaha 1:47.336 0.327 / 0.327
3 12 Maverick VIÑALES ESP Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 1:47.472 0.463 / 0.136
4 43 Jack MILLER AUS Pramac Racing Ducati 1:47.658 0.649 / 0.186
5 41 Aleix ESPARGARO ESP Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia 1:47.733 0.724 / 0.075
6 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 1:48.015 1.006 / 0.282
7 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda CASTROL Honda 1:48.322 1.313 / 0.307
8 21 Franco MORBIDELLI ITA Petronas Yamaha SRT Yamaha 1:48.372 1.363 / 0.050
9 36 Joan MIR ESP Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki 1:48.458 1.449 / 0.086
10 04 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team Ducati 1:48.608 1.599 / 0.150
11 29 Andrea IANNONE ITA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia 1:49.240 2.231 / 0.632
12 44 Pol ESPARGARO ESP Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM
13 42 Alex RINS ESP Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki 1:48.449 Q1 / Q1
14 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI JPN LCR Honda IDEMITSU Honda 1:48.477 Q1 / 0.028
15 9 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA Ducati Team Ducati 1:48.682 Q1 / 0.205
16 63 Francesco BAGNAIA ITA Pramac Racing Ducati 1:48.748 Q1 / 0.066
17 88 Miguel OLIVEIRA POR Red Bull KTM Tech 3 KTM 1:48.827 Q1 / 0.079
18 53 Tito RABAT ESP Reale Avintia Racing Ducati 1:48.916 Q1 / 0.089
19 82 Mika KALLIO FIN Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 1:49.085 Q1 / 0.169
20 99 Jorge LORENZO ESP Repsol Honda Team Honda 1:49.282 Q1 / 0.197
21 55 Hafizh SYAHRIN MAS Red Bull KTM Tech 3 KTM 1:49.315 Q1 / 0.033
22 17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Reale Avintia Racing Ducati 1:49.517 Q1 / 0.202
23 38 Bradley SMITH GBR Aprilia Racing Team Aprilia 1:49.756 Q1 / 0.239

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