Bagnaia leads Ducati qualifying one-two, Quartararo misses Q2
Sunday 24th October, 2021 - 12:54am
Francesco Bagnaia has taken pole position for the Emilia Romagna MotoGP while championship leader Fabio Quartararo failed to get out of Qualifying 1.
Bagnaia and Jack Miller make for factory Ducati Lenovo Team entries first and second on the grid at Misano, and the former has a big opportunity to boost his slim title chances given Monster Energy Yamaha’s Quartararo is only set to start 13th.
UPDATE: Quartararo did lose his fastest lap after all and is set to start from 15th
Both of the remaining championship hopes had to go into the opening 15-minute stanza of qualifying, when a combination of cold conditions and a substantially dry track meant that all opted to fit slicks and simply keep going.
For a while it was Bagnaia setting the fastest lap and Quartararo eventually reclaiming second position once he got back to the control line, until he failed to usurp Castrol LCR Honda’s Alex Marquez on his fifth flyer.
Quartararo did get back into the top two cut-off two laps later, but only monetarily because Alex Rins (Suzuki Ecstar) bettered him in the tow.
Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM) moved into second spot and Bagnaia improved further to a 1:33.393s just before the chequered flag, after which Alex Marquez went fourth-fastest.
That shuffled Quartararo back to fifth, before he regained two positions with a 1:34.411s on his final lap.
He then lost the time in the minutes after the session due to the presence of a yellow flag for an Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama Ducati) crash, but it was apparently reinstated.
When Qualifying 2 got underway, Bagnaia and Lecuona picked up where they left off.
The former was fastest initially with a 1:34.167s and then a 1:33.045s, while the latter held second courtesy of a 1:35.307s and then a 1:34.309s.
Miller took up third with a 1:34.766s before Luca Marini (Sky VR46 Esponsorama Ducati) clocked a 1:34.721s.
Danilo Petrucci (Tech3 KTM), Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM), and Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda) all took turns in second position as Miller had a tour through the gravel midway through the session.
Almost as soon as Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) had gone third with a 1:33.850s, Miller bounced back with a 1:33.250s on his fifth flyer to reclaim second spot.
The Queenslander threatened to bump Bagnaia but ultimately broke the beam with a 1:33.070s next time around to consolidate his position, as he continued to circulate without returning to the pits.
Pol Espargaro was third on a 1:33.313s when the chequered flag flew, but Marini denied him a berth on the front row when the Italian rookie achieved a 1:33.130s.
That meant a second row of Pol Espargaro, Oliveira, and Franco Morbidelli (Monster Energy Yamaha), while Marc Marquez ended up seventh after a late spill at Turn 6.
It was a crash-filled afternoon in MotoGP and the six-time premier class champion had already pulled off a massive save at the start of Q2 when he looked like going over the handlebars at Turn 2.
Lecuona ultimately qualified eighth from Q1 and Tech 3 KTM team-mate Petrucci ninth.
Johann Zarco slumped from fastest after Free Practice 3 to 10th on the starting grid, the Frenchman dropping his Ducati at Turn 14 after the chequered flag.
His Pramac Racing team-mate Jorge Martin had two crashes during Q2 and is set to start from 12th, with Gresini Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro between them.
Joining Quartararo on Row 5 will be Rins and Alex Marquez, with Row 6 being Bastianini, Takaaki Nakagami (Idemitsu LCR Honda), and Joan Mir (Suzuki Ecstar).
The last five on the grid are Maverick Viñales (Gresini Aprilia) from Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM), Andrea Dovizioso (Petronas SRT Yamaha), wildcard Michele Pirro (Ducati Lenovo Team), and Valentino Rossi (Petronas SRT Yamaha).
Aprilia Racing Team Gresini wildcard Lorenzo Savadori broke his right collarbone in a Free Practice 3 crash, and is set for surgery.
The 27-lap race is set to start on Sunday at 23:00 AEDT.
Qualifying: Emilia Romagna MotoGP Updated
|1||63||Francesco BAGNAIA||ITA||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||1:33.045|
|2||43||Jack MILLER||AUS||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||1:33.070||0.025 / 0.025|
|3||10||Luca MARINI||ITA||SKY VR46 Avintia||Ducati||1:33.130||0.085 / 0.060|
|4||44||Pol ESPARGARO||ESP||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||1:33.313||0.268 / 0.183|
|5||88||Miguel OLIVEIRA||POR||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||1:33.439||0.394 / 0.126|
|6||21||Franco MORBIDELLI||ITA||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||1:33.526||0.481 / 0.087|
|7||93||Marc MARQUEZ||ESP||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||1:33.850||0.805 / 0.324|
|8||27||Iker LECUONA||ESP||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||1:33.893||0.848 / 0.043|
|9||9||Danilo PETRUCCI||ITA||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||1:34.140||1.095 / 0.247|
|10||5||Johann ZARCO||FRA||Pramac Racing||Ducati||1:34.687||1.642 / 0.547|
|11||41||Aleix ESPARGARO||ESP||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||1:34.963||1.918 / 0.276|
|12||89||Jorge MARTIN||ESP||Pramac Racing||Ducati||2:24.631||51.586 / 49.668|
|13||42||Alex RINS||ESP||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||1:34.418||Q1 / Q1|
|14||73||Alex MARQUEZ||ESP||LCR Honda CASTROL||Honda||1:34.454||Q1 / 0.036|
|15||20||Fabio QUARTARARO||FRA||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||1:34.476||Q1 / 0.022|
|16||23||Enea BASTIANINI||ITA||Avintia Esponsorama||Ducati||1:35.236||Q1 / 0.760|
|17||30||Takaaki NAKAGAMI||JPN||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||Honda||1:35.641||Q1 / 0.405|
|18||36||Joan MIR||ESP||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||Suzuki||1:35.683||Q1 / 0.042|
|19||12||Maverick VIÑALES||ESP||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||1:35.835||Q1 / 0.152|
|20||33||Brad BINDER||RSA||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||1:36.478||Q1 / 0.643|
|21||04||Andrea DOVIZIOSO||ITA||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||1:36.639||Q1 / 0.161|
|22||51||Michele PIRRO||ITA||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||1:37.880||Q1 / 1.241|
|23||46||Valentino ROSSI||ITA||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||1:38.261||Q1 / 0.381|
|32||Lorenzo SAVADORI||ITA||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia|