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Practice report

MotoGP Dutch GP: Bezzecchi tops FP1, Marquez 21st

VR46 Ducati rider Marco Bezzecchi topped first practice for the MotoGP Dutch Grand Prix, as Marc Marquez’s new approach left him a distant 21st on his Honda.

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

A year on from his maiden MotoGP podium at the Dutch venue, Bezzecchi kicked off the 2023 Assen weekend by leading the field by 0.314 seconds having taken control of FP1 early on.

Bezzecchi went top with a 1m33.961s with around seven minutes of the session gone and began a succession of standings-topping laps, culminating in a 1m33.289s.

This would go unchallenged until the final 16 minutes, when Bezzecchi improved again to a 1m32.725s.

Fitting a fresh soft rear tyre for the final few moments of the session, Bezzecchi found more time to end the morning with a 1m32.246s.

He would not be tested as the final few laps of the session were posted, with Aprilia’s Maverick Vinales his nearest challenger on a 1m32.560s.

Alex Marquez completed the top three on his Gresini Ducati ahead of Pramac’s Johann Zarco, who suffered a high-speed crash going through Turn 15 with 16 minutes to go.

Despite his fast get-off, Zarco was able to re-join the session on his second Ducati to go fourth ahead of fellow Frenchman Fabio Quartararo.

The Yamaha rider is carrying injury into the Assen round after breaking the big toe on his left foot in a running incident while in Amsterdam earlier this week.

Despite this, Quartararo enjoyed a solid morning on his M1 to end up fifth, 0.558s off the pace, with VR46 Ducati’s Luca Marini trailing him.

Takaaki Nakagami was the top Honda rider by a considerable margin on his LCR-run RC213V in seventh, with German GP winner Jorge Martin eighth on the sister Pramac Ducati.

Jack Miller was ninth on the first of the KTMs, with Aleix Espargaro splitting him on his Aprilia from team-mate Brad Binder on the second factory team RC16.

Championship leader Francesco Bagnaia was only 12th at the chequered flag after a scrappy session on his factory Ducati.

The Italian suffered several moments throughout the 45-minute session, with a fast headshake going through Turn 13 in the closing stages leaving him visibly frustrated.

After a bruising Sachsenring weekend which consisted of five crashes, an injured Marc Marquez has come to Assen with a more cautious approach.

Fitting a fresh soft rear tyre for a late time attack, Marquez’s reserved run on his Honda showed as he could only muster a 1m34.111s to end FP1 1.8s off the pace in 21st ahead of only Iker Lecuiona as he deputises for the injured Joan Mir.

MotoGP Dutch GP FP1 results

Cla Rider Bike Time Gap Interval
1 Italy Marco Bezzecchi Ducati 1'32.246    
2 Spain Maverick Viñales Aprilia 1'32.560 0.314 0.314
3 Spain Alex Marquez Ducati 1'32.614 0.368 0.054
4 France Johann Zarco Ducati 1'32.762 0.516 0.148
5 France Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 1'32.804 0.558 0.042
6 Italy Luca Marini Ducati 1'32.881 0.635 0.077
7 Japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'32.981 0.735 0.100
8 Spain Jorge Martin Ducati 1'33.067 0.821 0.086
9 Australia Jack Miller KTM 1'33.087 0.841 0.020
10 Spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'33.421 1.175 0.334
11 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 1'33.486 1.240 0.065
12 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 1'33.498 1.252 0.012
13 Spain Augusto Fernandez KTM 1'33.588 1.342 0.090
14 Italy Fabio Di Giannantonio Ducati 1'33.633 1.387 0.045
15 Portugal Miguel Oliveira Aprilia 1'33.673 1.427 0.040
16 Italy Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 1'33.893 1.647 0.220
17 Italy Enea Bastianini Ducati 1'33.902 1.656 0.009
18 Spain Raúl Fernández Aprilia 1'33.941 1.695 0.039
19 Germany Stefan Bradl Honda 1'33.989 1.743 0.048
20 Italy Lorenzo Savadori Aprilia 1'34.055 1.809 0.066
21 Spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'34.111 1.865 0.056
22 Spain Iker Lecuona Honda 1'34.363 2.117 0.252
23 Germany Jonas Folger KTM 1'34.741 2.495 0.378

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