Valencia MotoGP: Morbidelli tops FP3, Rins and Quartararo miss Q2

Petronas SRT’s Franco Morbidelli dominated a tense third practice for the MotoGP Valencia Grand Prix as both Alex Rins and Fabio Quartararo missed the Q2 cut.

Valencia MotoGP: Morbidelli tops FP3, Rins and Quartararo miss Q2

A light sprinkling of rain ahead of the session posed a potential problem for those outside of the top 10 on combined times in bagging a place in Q2.

Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori set the early pace on wet rubber with a 1m46.614s, though it didn’t take long for the track to be good enough for slicks, with Petronas SRT’s Quartararo the first to take the plunge.

The Frenchman set a string of session-best laps, culminating in a 1m32.037s with around 23 minutes of running remaining.

KTM’s Pol Espargaro took over with a 1m31.897s, before Maverick Vinales moved ahead with a 1m31.615s – these lap times, crucially, not making a dent on the combined order.

However, Morbidelli changed this when he shot to the top of the FP3 order and to fourth on the combined timesheets with a 1m30.751s.

A 1m30.812s from Vinales in the final five minutes moved him up to fifth on the combined times, putting Alex Rins on the Suzuki into the danger zone in 10th.

Meanwhile, his teammate and championship leader Mir once again was struggling to extract a lap time from fresh soft rubber in the latter stages and wasn’t able to move himself from 13th as the session neared its end.

A final effort of 1m30.168s from Morbidelli put him 0.468 seconds clear of the field, with KTM’s Pol Espargaro jumping to second late on.

A late improvement for Johann Zarco in third (which put him fourth overall) on the Avintia Ducati proved disastrous for Quartararo, as it nudged him out of the top 10 places having leaped up to eighth briefly.

Read Also:

For the first time in his MotoGP career, Quartararo will have to go through Q1 alongside the man he sits joint-second in the standings with Rins, who ended up 15th overall having finished 11th in FP3.

Vinales headed Mir, who secured a Q2 place with a late 1m30.734s, with Takaaki Nakagami (LCR), Tech3’s Miguel Oliveira and Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro rounding out the top eight in FP3 and securing places in Q2.

The top 10 in FP3 was completed by Quartararo and Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci, though both will face Q1, as will Andrea Dovizioso on the sister factory Ducati and Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi.

The Pramac duo of Jack Miller and Francesco Bagnaia were 14th and 16th in FP3, but their laps from FP2 were good enough to secure them places in Q2.

Tech3’s Iker Lecuona was unable to return to action this morning as expected after testing positive for COVID-19.

FP3 results:

Cla Rider Bike Time Gap
1 Italy Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 1'30.168  
2 Spain Pol Espargaro KTM 1'30.636 0.468
3 France Johann Zarco Ducati 1'30.658 0.490
4 Spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 1'30.697 0.529
5 Spain Joan Mir Suzuki 1'30.734 0.566
6 Japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'30.785 0.617
7 Portugal Miguel Oliveira KTM 1'30.849 0.681
8 Spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'30.865 0.697
9 France Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 1'30.867 0.699
10 Italy Danilo Petrucci Ducati 1'30.926 0.758
11 Spain Alex Rins Suzuki 1'30.956 0.788
12 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 1'31.051 0.883
13 United Kingdom Cal Crutchlow Honda 1'31.077 0.909
14 Australia Jack Miller Ducati 1'31.128 0.960
15 Italy Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1'31.235 1.067
16 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 1'31.280 1.112
17 Italy Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1'31.372 1.204
18 Spain Alex Marquez Honda 1'31.540 1.372
19 Spain Tito Rabat Ducati 1'31.714 1.546
20 Germany Stefan Bradl Honda 1'31.942 1.774
21 Italy Lorenzo Savadori Aprilia 1'32.532 2.364
shares
comments

Related video

Lecuona tests positive for COVID-19, misses Valencia GP
Previous article

Lecuona tests positive for COVID-19, misses Valencia GP

Next article

Valencia MotoGP: Morbidelli claims pole as Suzukis struggle

Valencia MotoGP: Morbidelli claims pole as Suzukis struggle
Load comments
The three factors that crowned MotoGP's newest champion at Misano Prime

The three factors that crowned MotoGP's newest champion at Misano

The prospect of Fabio Quartararo clinching the 2021 MotoGP world championship title at Misano appeared small after struggling to 15th in qualifying, while main rival Francesco Bagnaia took pole. Here's how the Yamaha rider turned it around, with help from an ill-fated Bagnaia tyre choice, to secure the crown with two races to spare

MotoGP
Oct 25, 2021
Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on Prime

Marco Simoncelli: Remembering MotoGP's ultimate maverick 10 years on

Saturday 23 October marks the 10th anniversary of Marco Simoncelli's death. The one-time 250cc world champion and double MotoGP podium finisher was the ultimate maverick character with big hair, a big personality and an even bigger talent. Motorsport.com pays tribute to a much-missed figure, a decade on.

MotoGP
Oct 23, 2021
Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha in MotoGP Prime

Why Quartararo has evolved more than Yamaha in MotoGP

Fabio Quartararo has his first match point in the 2021 MotoGP title race this weekend at Misano. While the 2021 Yamaha is a much-improved bike to its inconsistent predecessor, its the rider himself who has shown the biggest evolution this season. Oriol Puigdemont delves into Quartararo's growth.

MotoGP
Oct 19, 2021
Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider Prime

Why Marc Marquez has to reinvent himself as a MotoGP rider

Marc Marquez's romp to victory at the Grand Prix of the Americas led many to believe the 'old' pre-injury Honda rider was close to coming back to his full powers. However, the 'old' Marquez will probably never exist again and instead he'll have to adapt to his new reality to return to title-winning ways in 2022.

MotoGP
Oct 6, 2021
Why self-preservation was key to Marquez's COTA "dream" result Prime

Why self-preservation was key to Marquez's COTA "dream" result

Marc Marquez scorched to his seventh Circuit of the Americas victory in MotoGP last Sunday with a display reminiscent of his pre-injury form. However, his path to the win across the weekend was in keeping with the current reality of his physical limitations, with self-preservation on Saturday key to his Sunday success

MotoGP
Oct 4, 2021
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