Valencia MotoGP: Quartararo stays on top in third practice

Fabio Quartararo did not relent his stranglehold of the MotoGP Valencia Grand Prix practice timesheets, after topping FP3 by 0.224 seconds from Marc Marquez.

Valencia MotoGP: Quartararo stays on top in third practice

Friday pacesetter Fabio Quartararo led the way in FP3 early on, and took over late on with a 1m30.232s to head into this afternoon’s qualifying as the rider to beat.

Marquez edged clear of the field with a 1m31.631s five minutes in, which he duly improved by six tenths before becoming the first rider to improve on combined times with a 1m30.898s – a laptime just 0.163s outside of Quartararo’s Friday best.

This moved the Honda rider half a second clear of the field in FP3 - though kept him third overall - and would remain the benchmark in the session until the closing stages.

Petronas Yamaha of Franco Morbidelli challenged Marquez’s time as the session entered its final eight minutes, though missed out by 0.086s.

Four minutes later, works Yamaha runner Maverick Vinales deposed Marquez with a 1m30.766s, before teammate Valentino Rossi took over at the top of the combined times with a 1m30.630s.

Pramac’s Jack Miller, who led early on, returned to the top of the standings shortly after Rossi set his pacesetting lap with a 1m30.543s, though Petronas’ Quartararo was starting light up the timing screens.

Quartararo produced a 1m30.232s, which would not be bettered as the chequered flag brought the session to an end, with Marquez leaping up to second with a final effort of 1m30.456s.

Miller held onto third ahead of Rossi and Morbidelli, while Vinales found himself shuffled back to sixth after the final salvo of laps.

Factory Ducati duo Danilo Petrucci and Andrea Dovizioso slotted in behind the Yamaha rider, with Joan Mir the only Suzuki directly into Q2 at present after teammate Alex Rins missed out in 12th.

LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow secured the last direct Q2 placement despite suffering a crash at the Turn 10 right-hander midway through the session.

Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro – who was 18th – crashed twice in FP3, while Pramac’s Francesco Bagnaia was sent over the handlebars of his GP18 while exiting pitlane late on in a bizarre incident. 

KTM’s Pol Espargaro was denied direct passage to Q2 by just 0.043s in the end, having sat second in the session at one point in the closing stages.

Tech3 KTM rookie Iker Lecuona had an impressive second morning as a MotoGP rider, as he managed to find a further eight tenths on his Friday best and ended up ahead of works KTM rider Mika Kallio, Bagnaia and Tech3 teammate Hadizh Syahrin in 20th.

Results:

Cla Rider Bike Time Gap
1 France Fabio Quartararo
Yamaha 1'30.232
2 Spain Marc Marquez
Honda 1'30.456 0.224
3 Australia Jack Miller
Ducati 1'30.543 0.311
4 Italy Valentino Rossi
Yamaha 1'30.630 0.398
5 Italy Franco Morbidelli
Yamaha 1'30.723 0.491
6 Spain Maverick Viñales
Yamaha 1'30.735 0.503
7 Italy Danilo Petrucci
Ducati 1'30.847 0.615
8 Italy Andrea Dovizioso
Ducati 1'30.851 0.619
9 Spain Joan Mir
Suzuki 1'30.958 0.726
10 United Kingdom Cal Crutchlow
Honda 1'30.996 0.764
11 Spain Pol Espargaro
KTM 1'31.039 0.807
12 Spain Alex Rins
Suzuki 1'31.093 0.861
13 France Johann Zarco
Honda 1'31.205 0.973
14 Spain Jorge Lorenzo
Honda 1'31.383 1.151
15 Italy Andrea Iannone
Aprilia 1'31.667 1.435
16 Italy Michele Pirro
Ducati 1'31.671 1.439
17 Czech Republic Karel Abraham
Ducati 1'31.786 1.554
18 Spain Aleix Espargaro
Aprilia 1'31.868 1.636
19 Spain Tito Rabat
Ducati 1'32.265 2.033
20 Spain Iker Lecuona
KTM 1'32.398 2.166
21 Finland Mika Kallio
KTM 1'32.521 2.289
22 Italy Francesco Bagnaia
Ducati 1'32.599 2.367
23 Malaysia Hafizh Syahrin
KTM 1'33.046 2.814
shares
comments
Marquez "proud" Alex is on Honda's list to replace Lorenzo

Previous article

Marquez "proud" Alex is on Honda's list to replace Lorenzo

Next article

Bagnaia hospitalised after bizarre practice crash

Bagnaia hospitalised after bizarre practice crash
Load comments
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Prime

How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike

His third place at Misano made Enea Bastianini the fifth different Ducati-mounted rider to score a podium in 2021. Amid a season that has seen one rider amass the bulk of Yamaha and Honda's success, the Ducati's versatility makes for a potent weapon, but the contribution of a former leading light shouldn't be forgotten

MotoGP
Sep 23, 2021
The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career Prime

The next steps in the rebuilding of a stalled MotoGP career

Maverick Vinales’ early debut with Aprilia has been one of the most interesting plots of the recent MotoGP rounds. The results may not look standout on paper, but a closer inspection reveals just how much progress Vinales has truly made in understanding a bike that has taken him well out of his “comfort zone”.

MotoGP
Sep 22, 2021
Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future Prime

Why Misano was a pivotal race for MotoGP's present and future

On a day each of the podium trio could claim to be the star of the show, the San Marino GP will be remembered as a pivotal race in both MotoGP's present and future. While Fabio Quartararo demonstrated his world title credentials just behind Francesco Bagnaia's flawless victory charge, a new threat emerged from the shadows

MotoGP
Sep 20, 2021
How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Prime

How Ducati's Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Prime

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Prime

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Prime

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the track's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP Prime

How Marc Marquez is facing his toughest challenge in MotoGP

The 2020 MotoGP season was an enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if you thought the world championship was a poorer place without Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape.

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021