Doha MotoGP: Quartararo tops wind-affected FP3, Mir to Q1

Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo topped a wind-affected FP2 for the Doha Grand Prix, as MotoGP world champion Joan Mir once again missed the Q2 cut.

Doha MotoGP: Quartararo tops wind-affected FP3, Mir to Q1

The wind had picked up considerably for the start of FP3, with a lot of dust being blown onto the Losail circuit which guaranteed there would be no combined time improvements.

Tech 3 KTM rider Iker Lecuona set the early pace in the session with a 1m58.073s, before Quartararo moved ahead on his Yamaha with a 1m56.912s.

The Frenchman wasn’t happy with the feeling on his M1 on Friday in the lower grip conditions experienced by much of the field because of the humidity.

He continued to better his pace to a 1m56.723s, though Mir would depose him 10 minutes later with a 1m56.450s on his Suzuki.

Mir blamed a strategy gaffe by his Suzuki team on Friday evening in FP2 for stopping him advancing directly into Q2, with the Spaniard forced to go through Q1 for the second week in a row later today.

Mir's time would remain the benchmark until the final three minutes, when teammate Alex Rins moved to the top of the order with a 1m56.347s.

Rins looked set to end FP3 leading a Suzuki 1-2, but Quartararo produced a 1m56.064s at the death to end the session on top – though Ducati’s Jack Miller remains fastest of all on combined times courtesy of his 1m53.145s from FP2.

The Suzuki duo rounded out the top three, Rins safely into Q2 with his FP2 effort while Mir will join all four KTM riders, Honda’s Pol Espargaro and Valentino Rossi in Q1 later this evening.

Danilo Petrucci was fourth on his Tech 3 KTM, but is only 12th on combined times and heads into Q2, while fifth-placed Maverick Vinales on the Yamaha will contest Q2.

Petronas SRT’s Franco Morbidelli, who was sixth in FP3, will join Vinales in Q2, with the remainder of the top 10 in the session – Avintia’s Enea Bastianini, LCR’s Alex Marquez, Rossi and Espargaro – all facing Q1.

Francesco Bagnaia was the only factory Ducati rider to complete some laps in FP3, the Italian 14th, while Miller, Pramac duo Johann Zarco and Jorge Martin and Avintia’s Luca Marini didn’t set times.

All but Marini of that quartet secured their Q2 places on Friday, with Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro (17th) and Honda’s Stefan Bradl (16th) the last of the direct entrants into the pole shootout session.

Qualifying for the Doha GP gets underway at 8pm local time.

FP3 results:

Cla # Rider Bike Time Gap
1 20 France Fabio Quartararo
Yamaha 1'56.064
2 42 Spain Alex Rins
Suzuki 1'56.347 0.283
3 36 Spain Joan Mir
Suzuki 1'56.450 0.386
4 9 Italy Danilo Petrucci
KTM 1'56.614 0.550
5 12 Spain Maverick Viñales
Yamaha 1'56.647 0.583
6 21 Italy Franco Morbidelli
Yamaha 1'56.660 0.596
7 23 Italy Enea Bastianini
Ducati 1'56.668 0.604
8 73 Spain Alex Marquez
Honda 1'56.701 0.637
9 46 Italy Valentino Rossi
Yamaha 1'56.718 0.654
10 44 Spain Pol Espargaro
Honda 1'56.789 0.725
11 88 Portugal Miguel Oliveira
KTM 1'56.855 0.791
12 33 South Africa Brad Binder
KTM 1'56.933 0.869
13 27 Spain Iker Lecuona
KTM 1'56.981 0.917
14 63 Italy Francesco Bagnaia
Ducati 1'57.335 1.271
15 32 Italy Lorenzo Savadori
Aprilia 1'57.378 1.314
16 6 Germany Stefan Bradl
Honda 1'57.450 1.386
17 41 Spain Aleix Espargaro
Aprilia 1'58.633 2.569
18 30 Japan Takaaki Nakagami
Honda 2'03.348 7.284
19 5 France Johann Zarco
Ducati
20 10 Italy Luca Marini
Ducati
21 43 Australia Jack Miller
Ducati
22 89 Spain Jorge Martin
Ducati
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