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Quartararo bounces back in Misano practice for Yamaha

James Pavey

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Saturday 12th September, 2020 - 7:13am

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Fabio Quartararo

Championship leader Fabio Quartararo led a Yamaha one-two-three in combined practice on Friday in Misano for the Gran Premio di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini.

Friday’s running marked a return to form for Petronas Yamaha SRT ace Quartararo, who despite leading the championship, has failed to finish better than seventh in the last three races.

The Frenchman ousted FP1 pacesetter Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) by just 0.009s, with Franco Morbidelli making it a Yamaha lockout.

Just 0.178s covered the top three by day’s end, a stark contrast to the morning session as Vinales left Quartararo half a second adrift in FP1.

Vinales covered race pace work in FP2 and was one of only three riders who failed to go quicker in the afternoon session than they did in the morning.

Team Suzuki Ecstar team-mates Alex Rins and Joan Mir both spent time at the summit in FP2, yet neither rider recorded a lap fast enough for the top 10 on combined times.

KTM appears to be Yamaha’s closest challenger in Misano, with Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) within half a second of Quartararo’s FP2 scorcher to round out the top five.

Valentino Rossi was sixth ahead of Danilo Petrucci (Ducati), with Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and last-start winner Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) making it four KTM entries in the top 10.

Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) rounded out the top 10, 0.747s down on Quartararo’s time.

Ducati veteran Andrea Dovizioso, second in the championship standings, was P11 as a second covered the top 15 riders.

Australian Jack Miller was seventh fastest in FP1, 1.304s away from Vinales’ best, dropping to 16th best in FP2 at 1.179s off Quartararo’s pace.

Riders will resume for FP3 at 17:55 AEST ahead of qualifying.

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