Tag Archives: Sam Lowes

Rins breaks through for win ahead of Alex Marquez | Fabio falters

2020 MotoGP Round Eleven – Aragon

2020 continues to serve up a stunner of a MotoGP season, and there have now been eight different premier class winners. In the Gran Premio Michelin de Aragon, it was Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) on the top step as the Suzuki rider took his first victory since Silverstone 2019, slicing up from tenth on the grid to fend off another late charge from rookie superstar Alex Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), who took second and the 850th premier class podium for Honda. Third place went to Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar), the number 36 back on the rostrum and the new Championship leader after a tough day at the office for Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT).

Fabio Quartararo had bounced back from two crashed on the weekend to secure pole position

MotoGP Race Report

Gran Premio Michelin de Aragon

As the lights went out, it was Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) who was off like a shot from second on the grid, the number 12 carving his way to the front immediately round the outside of Turn 2 as the Petronas Yamahas duelled behind, and Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) headed a bit wide.

Gran Premio Michelin de Aragon

Soon enough though, Viñales’ closest company came from Rins as the Suzuki rider sliced through from tenth to get past Morbidelli and Quartararo, homing in on the number 12 in the lead.

Maverick Vinales

Stalking the Monster Energy Yamaha for a couple of laps, Rins chose his moment at the final corner and took a tight, tight line to sweep up the inside for the lead, neatly done to take over at the front. Just behind, things were getting spicy as Mir had managed a two-for-one past the Petronas Yamahas with a similar move up into third, and Alex Marquez was on a charge.

Vinales, Mir, Marquez

Rins, Viñales, Mir… the trio at the front remained pretty close together as the cat and mouse began, with Marquez the man making serious gains. As the number 73 arrived on the scene, Mir seemingly decided enough was enough, slicing through on Viñales at the final corner. To compound Viñales’ chagrin, Marquez then made a stunner of a late dive past the Yamaha into Turn 1 too…

Rins, Morbidelli

Up ahead, Rins remained ahead but it was far from becoming a runaway win. As the laps ticked down, the number 42 retained the close company from team-mate Mir and Alex Marquez, but the next move wouldn’t threaten for the lead. With six to go, and again at the final corner, the number 73 Repsol Honda swooped past Mir to take over in second, Alex Marquez on for his second second place in a row. Or was he?

Once past, the Honda was closing. And not in thousandths or hundredths, but really reeling Rins in. Alex Marquez was over three tenths faster with four laps remaining, and looked seriously primed for a shot at the win. But Rins was holding station, and then a major warning came Marquez’ way at the final corner with two laps and a corner to go. The number 73 was out the seat as he squeezed on the gas and lot some ground, but he gathered it back up and set his sights back on the Suzuki.

Alex Rins, Alex Marquez and Joan Mir

Rins had a three tenth lead with two to go, and coming onto the last lap, it remained at 0.3 seconds. Marquez had to try and get close enough to get into the slipstream down the back straight, but Rins got his GSX-RR hooked up nicely and the Honda man wasn’t close enough to try his inside sweeping move. Despite the pressure, Rins made no mistakes. rising over the brow of the hill and making it to the line with two tenths in hand. The eighth winner in eight races and eighth of the season, back on the top step for the first time in over a year – and Marquez, despite losing out on the win, back on the podium for the second time in a week.

A very close finish and it looked as though Marquez might steal the win but Rins held on

Mir had to keep an eye out for Viñales on the final couple of laps, and Morbidelli had Nakagami for company in the battle for the top five. In the end, Mir came out on top in the fight for third but again, by only a couple of tenths, but it’s enough to see him take the title lead as Quartararo plummeted through the field. Viñales also made a big gain in points given that, coming home off the podium but the second Championship challenger over the line.

Nakagami kept up his 100% top 10 finish record in 2020 with a superb P5, the Honda rider managing to beat Morbidelli on the last lap for the honour of top Independent Team rider too. That’s the number 30’s second top five of the season.. and he’s only 29 points off Mir!


After a difficult weekend, Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) salvaged P7 on race day to sit closer to the top of the Championship than he did before the lights went out, top Borgo Panigale machine on Sunday and still in the hunt. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol), after a tough start, was able to climb back up to P8. The two Ducatis of Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) and Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing) completed the top 10, not what either would have been expecting heading into the weekend.

Jack Miller was in the fight early on but eventually was reeled in by others as the race progressed

Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) led teammate Pol Espargaro across the line as the Austrian factory suffered a difficult Sunday taking P11 and P12, with Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) finishing just under a second from his younger brother in P13. Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) grabbed P14 to finish ahead of the final point scorer – Danilo Petrucci (Ducati Team).

Petrucci and Quartararo

So where was Quartararo? The former points leader, after struggling with front tyre pressure, went from off the podium to fringes of the top ten to end up outside the points in P18. After a heroic pole position taken despite his big FP3 crash, the Frenchman had one of his toughest Sundays yet in the premier class… but he’ll be fired up to try and hit back next week. Mir now leads on 121 as Quartararo remains on 115, with Viñales third with 109. Dovizioso has 106, still very much in touch..

2020 Aragon MotoGP podium
1 Alex Rins -Team Suzuki Ecstar – Suzuki 41:54.391
2 Alex Marquez – Repsol Honda Team – Honda – +0.263
3 Joan Mir -Team Suzuki Ecstar – Suzuki +2.644
Alex Rins – P1

Incredible! Unbelievable! Sincerely, at the start I was so calm, and I was thinking ‘hmm maybe that’s a bad thing!’ I made a really good start, the first laps were really good, then when I was behind Maverick I was thinking, ‘Alex, you have a bit more so try to go, but slowly because otherwise you’ll ruin the rear tyre!’ I tried to manage the distance to the guys behind and it’s amazing. This is for all the fans that normally come here from the towns around here, and for all this amazing team, and my family, friends, girlfriend. Everybody! This is for you guys!”

Alex Rins

MotoGP is back on track for the Gran Premio Liqui Moly de Teruel this Friday.

MotoGP Race Results

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 Alex RINS Suzuki 41m54.391
2 Alex MARQUEZ Honda +0.263
3 Joan MIR Suzuki +2.644
4 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha +2.88
5 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda +4.57
6 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha +4.756
7 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati +8.639
8 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda +8.913
9 Jack MILLER Ducati +9.39
10 Johann ZARCO Ducati +9.617
11 Brad BINDER KTM +13.2
12 Pol ESPARGARO KTM +13.689
13 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia +14.598
14 Iker LECUONA KTM +15.291
15 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati +15.941
16 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM +18.284
17 Stefan BRADL Honda +20.136
18 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha +21.498
19 Bradley SMITH Aprilia +25.3
20 Tito RABAT Ducati +25.558
Race winner Alex Rins and new series leader Joan Mir

MotoGP World Championship Standings

Pos Rider Bike Points
1 Joan MIR Suzuki 121
2 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 115
3 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 109
4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 106
5 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 92
6 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 87
7 Alex RINS Suzuki 85
8 Jack MILLER Ducati 82
10 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 69
11 Brad BINDER KTM 67
12 Alex MARQUEZ Honda 67
13 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 65
14 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 58
15 Johann ZARCO Ducati 53
16 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 42
17 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 27
18 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 21
19 Iker LECUONA KTM 20
20 Bradley SMITH Aprilia 11
21 Stefan BRADL Honda 8
22 Tito RABAT Ducati 8
23 Michele PIRRO Ducati 4


A seismic shift in the fight to be crowned 2020 Moto2 World Champion took place at the Gran Premio Michelin Aragon Grand Prix, with Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) taking first and second – and Sky Racing Team VR46 teammates Luca Marini and Marco Bezzecchi both crashing out. That leaves Bastianini, who just beat Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) to second on the last lap, take over in the Championship lead, with Lowes’ 25 points for the win putting him just two off the top in the standings…

Sam Lowes

As the lights went out in Aragon, it was a super start from Bezzecchi as he took the holeshot from second on the grid, with Petronas Sprinta Racing’s Jake Dixon swooping through to third from row two. Early drama then struck as Jorge Navarro (MB Conveyors Speed Up) crashed at the opening corner following contact with Marcos Ramirez (Tennor American Racing), but the Spaniard thankfully walked away from a scary crash.

Then, polesitter Lowes ran slightly wide at Turn 12 from second and that allowed Fabio Di Giannantonio (MB Conveyors Speed Up) through after the Italian had sliced past Dixon, but Lowes hit back quick to set his sights Bezzecchi out front. Not long after that on Lap 3, the Championship then took its biggest twist yet as former points leader Luca Marini tucked the front through Turn 14 and slid out – leaving an open goal for those in the hunt to capitalise.

Teammate Bezzecchi would be the new man ahead in the standings if he could hold on to victory, but Lowes and Di Giannantonio were close. ‘Diggia’ made his move on Lowes with fourteen to go at MotorLand, but the three stayed close as Enea Bastianini edged ahead of Jake Dixon for the final place inside the top five just behind them.

Ten laps in, Di Giannantonio pounced on Bezzecchi for the lead at Turn 14. The pair were side-by-side down the long back straight but the Speed Up man was able to hold on as they went through the final corner. But then suddenly, into Turn 2 next time around, ‘Diggia’ was sliding out of the lead – leaving Bezzecchi and Lowes in a duel for the win.

By then, Martin was beginning to loom ominously in the background though, and Bastianini was just half a second off his rear wheel. With seven to go, the ‘Beast’ struck under the shadow of the MotorLand wall.

Martin wasn’t going to just sit and let Bastianini escape though, with the Red Bull KTM Ajo man immediately finding a response, but the number 33 had an answer too – back past on the brakes into Turn 8.

With five to go Bezzzecchi was still in control, half a second clear of Lowes. Three seconds further back Bastianini held third place, himself three tenths clear of Martin. The laps ticked by and the end drew nearer with Bezzecchi on course for victory, before another monumental moment in the World Championship chase suddenly took place. With just two laps remaining, Bezzecchi suddenly crashed out at Turn 2.

Lowes swooped through, and incredibly took the mantle as Championship leader too as Martin got himself in front of Bastianini. But onto the final lap, it was far from decided. Lowes crossed the line to take his first ever back to back wins, but the fight for second was close. It came down to the final sector on the final lap, with Bastianini putting in a clinical, ruthless and vital move to secure the extra four points to sit atop the Moto2™ standings.

Further back, Dixon well and truly bounced back from his Le Mans heartbreak by clinching a career-best finish in fourth. ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team’s Remy Gardner got the better of Ramirez and Hector Garzo (FlexBox HP 40) in the fight for the final place inside the top five. Tennor American Racing’s Joe Roberts took eighth, before Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Simone Corsi (MV Agusta Forward Racing) rounded out the top ten.

Sam Lowes – P1

Bezzecchi’s crash was a shame near the end of the race, Diggia I felt like I had his pace… I’m sorry for them, they were stronger than me at a couple of points on the track which is something I can work on for next weekend. But overall I was there, I kept the pressure on, was able to benefit from their mistakes and back to back wins is good for me! It’s the first time for me to get back to back wins in Moto2, so I’m really really happy.”

Remy Gardner – P5

Qualifying was tough, and I got caught out, ending tenth on the grid. Not where I wanted to be, but I was happy with the rhythm and confident of a good race. I’m extremely happy to finish fifth. It was a big comeback from tenth on the grid and we completed our objective. We also moved up a spot in the championship. We need to keep working and hopefully we can do better. I want to thank the team, we continue to work really well together, and to everyone who is supporting me. We don’t have long to wait until the next race – I’m ready!”

2020 Aragon Moto2 podium
1 Sam Lowes – EG 0,0 Marc VDS – Kalex 39:33.202
2 Enea Bastianini – Italtrans Racing Team – Kalex +4.195
3 Jorge Martin – Red Bull KTM Ajo – Kalex +4.430

Moto2 Race Results

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 Sam LOWES Kalex 39m33.202
2 Enea BASTIANINI Kalex +4.195
3 Jorge MARTIN Kalex +4.340
4 Jake DIXON Kalex +9.298
5 Remy GARDNER Kalex +14.765
6 Marcos RAMIREZ Kalex +15.13
7 Hector GARZO Kalex +15.192
8 Joe ROBERTS Kalex +17.024
9 Tetsuta NAGASHIMA Kalex +19.000
10 Simone CORSI MV Agusta +20.206
11 Augusto FERNANDEZ Kalex +22.661
12 Thomas LUTHI Kalex +22.692
13 Edgar PONS Kalex +22.995
14 Stefano MANZI MV Agusta +23.301
15 Marcel SCHROTTER Kalex +23.989
16 Xavi VIERGE Kalex +26.747
17 Lorenzo DALLA PORTA Kalex +26.862
18 Nicolò BULEGA Kalex +27.686
19 Hafizh SYAHRIN Speed Up +27.761
20 Lorenzo BALDASSARRI Kalex +27.892
22 Andi Farid IZDIHAR Kalex +44.779
23 Somkiat CHANTRA Kalex +45.687
24 Xavi CARDELUS Speed Up +47.231
25 Kasma DANIEL Kalex +58.178
26 Piotr BIESIEKIRSKI NTS +1m05.154
27 Jorge NAVARRO Speed Up +3 Laps
Not Classified
DNF Marco BEZZECCHI Kalex 2 Laps
DNF Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO Speed Up 11 Laps
DNF Luca MARINI Kalex 19 Laps

Moto2 World Championship Standings


Rider Bike Points
1 Enea BASTIANINI Kalex 155
2 Sam LOWES Kalex 153
3 Luca MARINI Kalex 150
4 Marco BEZZECCHI Kalex 130
5 Jorge MARTIN Kalex 95
6 Tetsuta NAGASHIMA Kalex 79
7 Joe ROBERTS Kalex 74
8 Remy GARDNER Kalex 72
9 Thomas LUTHI Kalex 72
10 Marcel SCHROTTER Kalex 61
11 Aron CANET Speed Up 61
12 Xavi VIERGE Kalex 59
13 Augusto FERNANDEZ Kalex 54
14 Lorenzo BALDASSARRI Kalex 47
15 Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO Speed Up 45
16 Jorge NAVARRO Speed Up 41
17 Jake DIXON Kalex 35
18 Hector GARZO Kalex 34
19 Marcos RAMIREZ Kalex 25
20 Stefano MANZI MV Agusta 20
21 Hafizh SYAHRIN Speed Up 18
22 Nicolò BULEGA Kalex 17
23 Simone CORSI MV Agusta 14
24 Somkiat CHANTRA Kalex 10
26 Edgar PONS Kalex 5
27 Lorenzo DALLA PORTA Kalex 5
28 Dominique AEGERTER NTS 4


Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing) threatened it last time out, but at MotorLand Aragon the Spaniard got the job done to perfection to take his first victory of the season and become the 100th different Grand Prix winner for Honda. After charging up from P17 on the grid, the man he just beat to the line was Darryn Binder (CIP – Green Power), the South African less than a tenth off, with polesitter Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) taking his first Grand Prix podium in third.

Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing)

Albert Arenas (Solunion Aspar Team Moto3) took the holeshot from pole, the Championship leader getting the jump on polesitter Fernandez – but not for long. The number 25 struck back quickly, before Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) also made short work of Arenas too. There was early drama hit for Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) as he crashed out, and not long after John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) and Alonso Lopez (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) were given their Long Laps to take within three.

At the front, a distinct group of four had broken away: Fernandez, Suzuki, Arenas and Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team), with Darryn Binder hunting them down and, not long after, joining the battle to make it a five-rider fight. Meanwhile, title challengers Celestino Vietti (Sky Racing Team VR46) and Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) found themselves mired down in the fight for sixth – and not at the front of that freight train either.

As the five at the front fought it out, however, their pace started to come down and what had seemed an insurmountable gap was suddenly an awful lot smaller. The trio on their tail were Masia, McPhee – despite his Long Lap – and Jeremy Alcoba (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3). And then there were eight, and once on the scene, McPhee struck quickly to take Suzuki at the rear of the initial leaders to make it a full group battle.

Fernandez remained pretty steadfast in the lead until a mistake just onto Lap 14, when Binder swept through to capitalise immediately – followed by Arenas. And the number 75 took the lead not long after that as Fernandez was then forced to defend from Fenati for third. But war broke out at Turn 1 next time around, and just like that the number 25 was back in the hot seat and the whole group had shuffled.

At the start of the penultimate lap, McPhee headed a bit wide and dropped down to just ahead of Suzuki, who seemed to be struggling to hang in with the group, and Arenas also opened the door for Binder to go through. Masia was at the front of the train though and there he would remain – the man ahead onto the last lap.

That had already changed by Turn 2, however, as Fernandez took the baton back and Alcoba threatened in third. Arenas was fourth at that point before the title leader then ran wide on the exit of Turn 5, and then Alcoba and Masia got very close for comfort into Turn 8. Fernandez was still leading as they shuffled behind him though, with Binder round the outside of Alcoba at Turn 14 to have the inside line at Turn 15, grabbing P3 heading onto the back straight.

The podium three were the top three, but it was Fernandez, Masia, Binder still as the three opened the gas down the straight. Tucked into Fernandez’ slipstream though, Masia was the man on the move, able to reel Fernandez in and then take over at the front, with Binder also slipstreaming past the number 25. Coming over the crest of the hill, Masia held it to the line to earn his first victory with Leopard Racing from P17 on the grid – Honda’s 100th different Grand Prix winner.

Binder lost out by less than a tenth but earned his second podium of 2020, and Fernandez may have lost out on the win but the Spaniard bwas ecstatic to seal his maiden World Championship podium.

Fenati had another solid ride to take fourth as the Italian remains super consistent, with McPhee recovering well from his Long Lap and Turn 1 excursion to claim P5 – and important points for the Championship. Alcoba crossed the line P6 in the end, the rookie again impressing, with Arenas losing out on the last lap to finish P7 – just 0.396 from victory though. Suzuki lost touch in the latter stages but took eighth, still on the comeback to full strength.

Vietti never troubled the leading contenders in Aragon but finishes just a couple of places behind Arenas in P9, with Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) rounding out the top 10 as the Italian had Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Tatay for company in P11 and P12 respectively. Ayumu Sasaki (Red Bull KTM Tech3) finished a lonely P13, the Japanese rider finishing six seconds ahead of struggling compatriot Ogura. It’s just two points picked up in Aragon for the man second in the Championship as Ogura slips to 13 behind Arenas. Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech3) picked up the final point at the Aragon GP in P15.

Andrea Migno (Sky Racing Team VR46) and Maximilian Kofler (CIP Green Power) crashed out at MotorLand.

Another scintillating lightweight class encounter sees Masia become the 100th Honda rider to win a Grand Prix, Arenas extend his lead and Ogura continue searching for his earlier season magic.

Jaume Masia

For sure, I didn’t expect that rhythm. But I was thinking about not losing my confidence with the bike, the team worked a lot, but all weekend we struggled a lot with the setting unlike in Le Mans. I don’t know how I arrived at the group as Raul put in a high rhythm, he was really strong. But finally we arrived at the group, maybe we pushed the rear too much and used it too much, but finally with my bike on the straight I could overtake Raul.”

2020 Aragon Moto3 podium
1 Jaume Masia – Leopard Racing – Honda 37:45.009
2 Darryn Binder – CIP – Green Power – KTM +0.091
3 Raul Fernandez – Red Bull KTM Ajo – KTM +0.196

Moto3 Race Results

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 Jaume MASIA Honda 37m45.009
2 Darryn BINDER KTM +0.091
3 Raul FERNANDEZ KTM +0.196
4 Romano FENATI Husqvarna +0.327
5 John MCPHEE Honda +0.368
6 Jeremy ALCOBA Honda +0.385
7 Albert ARENAS KTM +0.396
8 Tatsuki SUZUKI Honda +1.933
9 Celestino VIETTI KTM +2.389
10 Dennis FOGGIA Honda +2.461
11 Kaito TOBA KTM +2.966
12 Carlos TATAY KTM +3.02
13 Ayumu SASAKI KTM +4.872
14 Ai OGURA Honda +10.949
15 Deniz ÖNCÜ KTM +10.979
16 Filip SALAC Honda +11.172
17 Alonso LOPEZ Husqvarna +13.861
18 Niccolò ANTONELLI Honda +19.761
19 Sergio GARCIA Honda +21.284
20 Yuki KUNII Honda +21.339
21 Riccardo ROSSI KTM +21.379
22 Jason DUPASQUIER KTM +21.44
23 Stefano NEPA KTM +21.52
24 Ryusei YAMANAKA Honda +36.57
25 Barry BALTUS KTM +36.628
26 Davide PIZZOLI KTM +36.676
27 Khairul Idham PAWI Honda +36.739
Not Classified
DNF Maximilian KOFLER KTM 2 Laps
DNF Andrea MIGNO KTM 11 Laps
Not Finished 1st Lap
DNF Gabriel RODRIGO Honda 0 Lap

Moto3 World Championship Standings

Pos Rider Bike Points
1 Albert ARENAS KTM 144
2 Ai OGURA Honda 131
3 Celestino VIETTI KTM 126
4 Tony ARBOLINO Honda 115
5 John MCPHEE Honda 109
6 Jaume MASIA Honda 108
8 Tatsuki SUZUKI Honda 83
9 Darryn BINDER KTM 82
10 Gabriel RODRIGO Honda 77
11 Romano FENATI Husqvarna 70
12 Dennis FOGGIA Honda 69
13 Jeremy ALCOBA Honda 56
14 Andrea MIGNO KTM 47
15 Sergio GARCIA Honda 37
16 Niccolò ANTONELLI Honda 33
17 Stefano NEPA KTM 26
18 Kaito TOBA KTM 24
19 Ayumu SASAKI KTM 23
20 Deniz ÖNCÜ KTM 23
21 Filip SALAC Honda 20
22 Alonso LOPEZ Husqvarna 16
23 Carlos TATAY KTM 14
24 Ryusei YAMANAKA Honda 13
25 Riccardo ROSSI KTM 5

2020 MotoGP Calendar

Rnd Date Circuit
1 08 March (Moto2/Moto3) Losail International Circuit
2 19 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
3 26 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
4 09 August Automotodrom Brno
5 16 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
6 23 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
7 13 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
8 20 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
9 27 September Barcelona – Catalunya
10 11 October Le Mans
11 18 October MotorLand Aragón
12 25 October MotorLand Aragón
13 08 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
14 15 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
15 22 November Autodromo Internacional do Algarve

Source: MCNews.com.au

Five brands in top seven on slippery and windy Friday at Catalunya

Franco Morbidelli leads Friday Practice at Catalunya

Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) was struggling with illness the week after his incredible maiden MotoGP win in the San Marino GP, but now he’s back – and back on top. The Italian shot to P1 in the afternoon on Friday to rule the roost, a tenth ahead of Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing), with rookie Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) searing up to third by the end of the day’s action.

Franco Morbidelli


The morning, however, belonged to Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) as the Frenchman went faster and faster to end the session over four tenths clear of nearest rival Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team). Dovizioso, in turn, was a couple of tenths clear of Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) down in third, and the two spent a while together on track, whether by accident or design.

It was an uncharacteristic start to the event for Mir just before that, however, as the Spaniard crashed at Turn 5 unhurt, although upon getting back on the Mayorcan went quicker.

Fourth place went the way of Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) as last week’s winner was just 0.045 off Mir, that making the top four in the title fight also the top four in FP1. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) was less than a tenth off Viñales, in an impressive fifth.

Morbidelli, Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar), Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP), Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) and Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) completed the top ten, Crutchlow impressing on his return from injury. As well as Mir’s crash, there was a tumble for Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) at Turn 2.


In the much windier afternoon, Morbidelli made sure Petronas Yamaha SRT were top in both sessions of the day. Morbidelli, Binder and Rins all rose into the top four to slot in behind FP1 pacesetter Quartararo initially, with Viñales and Rossi also improving their times. After the first few bouts, Dovizioso, Quartararo, Mir and Aleix Espargaro were the only riders inside the top 10 who hadn’t gone faster in the first 15 minutes of FP2.

Morbidelli was then down at Turn 10 – unhurt – with 24 minutes to go. Before that, Zarco also crashed at Turn 5 – rider ok – and Repsol Honda Team’s Stefan Bradl also went down, the latter at Turn 2. Lecuona later suffered a second crash of the day. Wind or grip? The session was certainly a tougher one in terms of tumbles.

Heading into the final 10 minutes of FP2, there were 12 riders within a second and with automatic entry to Q2 already on everyone’s minds, that meant one thing – cue the time attacks!

Brad Binder P3

The first benchmark came from Binder as he leapt up from outside the top 20 in FP1 to lead the way, four tenths clear. Morbidelli and Zarco were on a charge but lost those laps after Yellow Flags for Lecuona’s crash, but next time around the duo became the first and only riders into the 1:39s, demoting Binder to third overall.

Viñales also struck late to slot into fourth, ahead of Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu). Every rider bar three improved their time in the afternoon by the time the flag came out: Dovizioso, teammate Danilo Petrucci and Quartararo were the outliers.

Overall then, it’s the FP2 fastest five of Morbidelli, Zarco, Binder, Viñales and Nakagami who are also fastest overall, with Quartararo’s FP1 time slotting him into sixth on the combined time-sheets. That shuffles Mir down to P7 overall, ahead of Pol Espargaro, Alex Marquez and Rossi. The latter duo are the most successful on the grid at the track across all classes, with three and five wins, respectively.

Jack Miller P12

Next up is another group who all improved, but remain outside the top ten: Rins is 11th and the first man looking to move forward in FP3, ahead of Jack Miller (Pramac Racing), Crutchlow and Aleix Espargaro.  Miller held back by struggles for grip and also coping with the wind.

Dovizioso, who didn’t go faster in the afternoon, ended the day in P15 overall. For him more than many, FP3 is a chance to shoot back towards the top.

Friday Rider Reflections

Franco Morbidelli – P1

“I felt immediately very good with the bike today and I was able to be quite fast this morning. I think we did the right modifications this afternoon to improve the pace and I was able to be fast. I’m happy with today. I went in too hot to Turn 10 with cold tyres on my first flying lap, it was too early to push that hard and I ended up on the ground. I wanted to get the bike back to the pitbox to keep working with the used tyres, but unfortunately I was not able to. I changed my focus to the flying lap with soft tyres and was able to put in a quick lap. It was a really positive Friday for us. This weekend will be interesting because the conditions could play a big part, there is a lot of wind and the grip level of the track is slightly strange. We need to see how it develops over the weekend and try to make a strategy, but at the moment it is really difficult to predict.”

Franco Morbidelli
Johann Zarco – P2

“It has been a good day today in a track that I like a lot. In the morning with a new tire it was not easy to set a good time.  The afternoon training was weird, I had a small crash possibly caused by the low temperature on the left side of the tire.  Despite this I managed to go fast, at the end of the session on soft tires I managed to go fast and finish the day in second position.”

Johann Zarco
Maverick Vinales – P4

“I’m very happy with last week’s victory, it gives us some extra confidence, and now we’re in Montmeló, which is a track that I love and where I can ride very fast. The first day has been good. In the morning I felt fast straight away, but in the afternoon the conditions were more difficult because of the wind, but I think we rode well. Our lap times were quite good, and the most important thing is that the feeling is there. I was feeling comfortable on the bike. Honestly, I didn’t do a very good hot lap, because I was on the medium front and I didn’t want to take the risk to push, but I’m quite happy. We are trying to improve and understand the bike. We just try to remain calm and go with the flow in the corners. Tomorrow we will focus on the soft-soft tyre combination to see if it works for us over the race distance. We’ll also try to make another step, especially concerning the race set-up, but I feel strong. If I can push for the pole position, I will, but our main objective is to be on the front row, and then we’ll see where we stand.”

Maverick Vinales
Takaaki Nakagami – P5

“Today was a bit of a strange day. The track condition was not the best and, normally, from FP1 to FP2 you can feel there is more rubber on the track and more grip. But today I didn’t feel any improvement on the track because it was so windy, this afternoon was maybe worse than this morning, and conditions were so difficult. I really struggled to keep hold of the bike. At the end of FP2 we put a new soft rear tyre on and were able to improve the lap time and finish P5 overall, so we’re into the top 10 and this is a good start for us. But we definitely need to improve for the race distance, because with the medium compound we are not strong enough. So we’ll work hard to prepare a good bike for tomorrow.”

Fabio Quartararo – P6

“I was not feeling well yesterday and, although I am better today, I am still not at 100%. However, the feeling on the bike was great, this morning we managed to make quite a good lap time. The track condition was a bit strange, but we finished in a good position. This afternoon we continued with the used tyre, did a lot of laps and the feeling was great. I was surprised that we could make the quick laps we did on these tyres. Unfortunately when I went to do the time attack, I had a problem with the brakes and so couldn’t put the lap together. We still have FP3 tomorrow to really push and see our true potential. I’m feeling good on the bike and let’s see tomorrow if we can improve something for the race.”

Fabio Quartararo
Joan Mir – P7

“Today has been a bit tough for everyone because the track is slippery and it’s really difficult to find the best tyre option, it’s also quite windy. This first day hasn’t really shown who’s on the pace and who’s not. I worked a lot with a used medium rear tyre which gave me some info for the race. I didn’t really try to set fast laps today, but my lap times weren’t bad anyway. Qualifying will be interesting tomorrow.”

Joan Mir
Alex Marquez – P9

“It was not a bad day for us, it is really positive to be ninth. Maybe not every rider was pushing to their maximum today, but it’s a positive sign. I am feeling good on the bike, even if we are suffering a bit with rear grip – I think all riders are finding the rear grip tough. It’s a lovely track but there’s no grip and we have to try and manage it, hopefully with more riding it improves. I am happy with how this first day has gone, I am using everything we have been learning in the previous races and the test and we are making progress.”

Alex Marquez
Valentino Rossi – P10

“The conditions are difficult, because the grip level is very low. So, you have to ride the bike in a different way compared to Misano and manage the sliding and spinning rear as much as possible – which is difficult. But, apart from that, I don’t feel so bad. Today was positive because my pace is quite good, I feel good with the bike. It works well, and I feel comfortable. For sure, we will have to work a lot, because everybody will improve for tomorrow, but the first day wasn’t so bad. I’m in P10, but I think my potential is higher. The windy conditions were difficult this afternoon, especially on the front straight, because when you exit from the last corner you don’t have any protection from the wind. The straight is also very fast, and at the end of it the wind is quite inconsistent and it moves the bike a lot. That’s quite scary. But it looks like it will be less windy tomorrow, so I think FP3 will be very crucial, as always, for staying in the top 10. I think everybody will be pushing at the maximum. After that I will try to do a good qualifying and try to start from the first two rows. Right now it’s still open between the soft and the medium tyres, especially on the rear. We need to make some more laps before we make a decision. Usually at this track the grip level improves on the second day, so we will see tomorrow.”

Valentino Rossi
Alex Rins – P11

“Today I got back the good feeling that I didn’t have in Misano. This morning I suffered a bit with the low grip on the track, but in the afternoon I started to really enjoy riding here and I managed a lot of consistent lap times. My aim is to take another step forward tomorrow in terms of one lap pace and then I’ll be hoping to qualify well.”

Alex Rins
Jack Miller – P12

“Unfortunately a combination of things weren’t helpful, I did not have grip and the wind was very strong. Also, I struggled a lot with the front wheel because of the wind. Let’s hope it will be better tomorrow as the weather forecast should improve.”

Jack Miller
Cal Crutchlow – P13

“It was positive to be back out on the track today with the LCR Honda team. We worked in a good way, I tried the setting we had for the race here last year when I was really competitive in the middle and the end of the race. But today that didn’t work with the 2020 Honda and we have to go back to the drawing board a little bit to improve my feeling with the bike. We had some instability with the bike, but a lot of this was due to the wind today as it was really, really high. But we worked in a good way and it was nice to be back in the garage with the boys. I felt like I was competitive, I wasn’t fast enough, but I was competitive. I still have some pain with my arm, the ankle felt ok, but my tendon in the arm is causing me some bother and the arm is very swollen again, so we’ll have to do the best treatment we can so we can ride well tomorrow.”

Cal Crutchlow
Aleix Espargaro – P14

“A difficult day, but I felt good. I like this layout and I had fun riding today. The grip is extremely low, especially if we compare it to Misano. Because of this, I did not take too many risks, as it would have been incredibly easy to make a mistake. Unfortunately, I do not have good sensations with the medium tyre but, because of tyre allocation, I was only able to use the soft in the last 10 minutes of FP2. I felt much better with that one, but I was unable to do a good lap, partly because of a yellow flag. Tomorrow morning I’ll try again to qualify for Q2.”

Aleix Espargaro
Andrea Dovizioso – P15

“As expected, there is much less grip on this track than Misano, and for this reason, in this morning’s session, we first had to adapt to these new conditions. Compared to the rest of the riders on track, today we worked very differently and therefore we cannot make a real comparison to understand our potential. Unfortunately, with today’s strong wind we have not been able to get any univocal feedback from the tests we made, so we hope tomorrow to find different conditions, which will allow us to confirm the work done. The goal will be to be able to finish FP3 in the top ten tomorrow morning”.

Andrea Dovizioso
Iker Lecuona – P16

“I have to admit, that I was struggling a lot with the front today. I had two crashes and didn’t really understand why, as there was no single warning. I felt good, but suddenly I lost the front. I need to work with the team now in order to try to find a good solution for tomorrow and hopefully we can improve.”

Miguel Oliveira – P17

“Today has been a difficult day for us. We couldn’t manage to find a good balance with the bike to gain some grip here on this track. Coming here, we knew that the grip level was not so high, but we didn’t expect to find so many issues. So, we will do our best together with the team to work on this in order to do a decent FP3 tomorrow morning.”

Miguel Oliveira
Bradley Smith – P18

“I think it was a demanding day for everyone, especially in terms of rear grip. It seems rather difficult to get the tyre up to temp here, partly because it is a bit cooler than the usual situation here. It will take a few laps to find the right feeling and I’m curious to see what happens tomorrow since I don’t think it will be possible to aim for a flying lap in FP3 and qualifying, but to increase pace gradually instead. Historically, we stress the tyre less with the RS-GP and this is a disadvantage for us at the moment. We need to analyse the data and try to make improvements where that is concerned.”

Stefan Bradl – P19

“My arm is fine, this morning I felt much better than last week and I didn’t have any problems with it. This morning we started well, I am happy with the general setup of the bike and it seems like Honda has made a step since Misano. I think we have a good base for the rest of the weekend. The crash we had today was a little strange, I am perfectly okay, but it upset our plans for FP2 a little bit and I couldn’t do a proper time attack after. Otherwise, we are in quite a good way.”

Stefan Bradl
Pecco Bagnaia – P20

“It was a tough day, I did not have a good feeling as I did not have grip and the wind was very strong, especially in some areas of the track. From the data we have analysed it was found that I could not warm up the tires despite the changes that we have applied. There should be more grip tomorrow as the weather should improve and I am sure it will be better.”

Pecco Bagnaia
Tito Rabat – P21

“It has been a difficult day, things have not turned out as we expected but we are still looking on the positive side.  We have tried things and for tomorrow we have everything much clearer.  I hope to continue taking steps forward as before during this weekend.”

Danilo Petrucci – P22

“It was a rather difficult day, conditioned mainly by the strong wind, which prevented us from immediately understanding which direction to take on this track. After the first session, we made choices that were not correct, and that’s why we had to take a step back. Fortunately, we were able to find the right way towards the end of the day and understand what we need. Of course, today we did not try a time attack, but after this afternoon, I am confident that I can improve tomorrow”.

Danilo Petrucci

Friday MotoGP Combined Practice Times

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 F.Morbidelli YAMAHA 1m39.789
2 J.Zarco DUCATI +0.109
3 B.Binder KTM +0.219
4 M.Viñales YAMAHA +0.419
5 T.Nakagami HONDA +0.623
6 F.Quartararo YAMAHA +0.642
7 J.Mir SUZUKI +0.652
8 P.Espargaro KTM +0.685
9 A.Marquez HONDA +0.689
10 V.Rossi YAMAHA +0.713
11 A.Rins SUZUKI +0.749
12 J.Miller DUCATI +0.837
13 C.Crutchlow HONDA +0.965
14 A.Espargaro APRILIA +1.002
15 A.Dovizioso DUCATI +1.072
16 I.Lecuona KTM +1.082
17 M.Oliveira KTM +1.239
18 B.Smith APRILIA +1.306
19 S.Bradl HONDA +1.471
20 F.Bagnaia DUCATI +1.548
21 T.Rabat DUCATI +1.884
22 D.Petrucci DUCATI +2.270


Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was back on top on Friday at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya, the Brit ahead of closest challenger Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46) by two tenths by the end of play. Completing the top three was Marcel Schrötter (Liqui Moly Intact GP) as the German once again showed some solid speed, fastest in the afternoon.


Lowes kicked off the weekend fastest with a 1:44.122 to lead Championship leader Marini from the off, the two split by exactly two tenths in FP1. Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) took third as he found some solid form, but the Japanese rider was over half a second off Lowes’ lap. Speed Up machinery made a resurgence in fourth and fifth, meanwhile, with impressive rookie Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team Moto2) getting the better of Fabio Di Giannantonio (HDR Heidrun Speed Up) as the two completed the top five.

The top 14 were within a second in FP1 and with Lowes half a second faster than Nagashima, that meant it was just half a second covering P3 to P14!

There were three crashes but two crashers in the session, with Andi Izdihar (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) taking a tumble at Turn 10, before Simone Corsi (MV Agusta Forward Racing) followed suit not long after. Corsi also later crashed at Turn 5, rider ok.


The afternoon saw Schrötter take to the top, with the German 0.066 ahead of Di Giannantonio in the session. Home hero Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) slotted into third, ahead of Marco Bezzecchi (Sky Racing Team VR46) and second in the Championship, Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team), as the latter made a leap up the timesheets in the session at least, from P13 in FP1.

Jake Dixon (Petronas Sprinta Racing) crashed at Turn 2, before Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) did the same shortly after, riders ok. Gardner has been given a six-place grid penalty for the incident after crashing whilst not respecting a Yellow Flag.

Overall then, it’s Lowes and Marini who lead the way thanks to their fastest times in FP1, ahead of Schrötter by virtue of his fastest lap in the afternoon. Di Giannantonio was consistently quick in both sessions but his FP2 best puts him in fourth, with Nagashima completing the fastest five on Friday by virtue of his FP1 lap.

Rookie Canet ends the day in sixth ahead of Marco Bezzecchi, both also courtesy of their FP1 laps, ahead of Xavi Vierge in eighth.

Next up was the returning Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) as the Spaniard’s FP1 best put him P7 in that session and P9 overall, a solid day’s work as he gets back on track after missing two races.

Augusto Fernandez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) completed the top ten on Day 1, but by an infinitesimal 0.002 – with Bo Bendsneyder (NTS RW Racing GP) missing out by the equally tiny margin of 0.005!

Friday Moto2 Combined Practice Times

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 S.Lowes KALEX 1m44.122
2 L.Marini KALEX +0.200
3 M.Schrotter KALEX +0.409
4 F.Di Giannanto SPEED UP +0.475
5 T.Nagashima KALEX +0.508
6 A.Canet SPEED UP +0.515
7 M.Bezzecchi KALEX +0.643
8 X.Vierge KALEX +0.678
9 J.Martin KALEX +0.734
10 A.Fernandez KALEX +0.736
11 B.Bendsneyde NTS +0.741
12 E.Bastianini KALEX +0.764
13 N.Bulega KALEX +0.814
14 J.Dixon KALEX +0.841
15 H.Syahrin SPEED UP +0.922
16 J.Navarro SPEED UP +1.000
17 E.Pons KALEX +1.002
18 H.Garzo KALEX +1.032
19 T.Luthi KALEX +1.111
20 R.Gardner KALEX +1.164
21 M.Ramirez KALEX +1.291
22 S.Manzi MV AGUSTA +1.297
23 J.Roberts KALEX +1.321
24 S.Corsi MV AGUSTA +1.407
25 S.Chantra KALEX +1.532
26 L.Dalla Porta KALEX +1.612
27 A.Izdihar KALEX +1.759
28 L.Baldassarri KALEX +1.770
29 K.Daniel KALEX +1.820
30 P.Biesiekirski NTS +2.694


Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) is making something of a habit of going fastest on Friday, and the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya was no different as the Spaniard ended the day with a fairly comfortable margin ahead of compatriot Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing). Last week’s winner, Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team), completed the top three on the combined timesheets.


FP1 saw a familiar name at the top once again: Fernandez. The Spaniard made it three FP1s in a row at the top, and was the only man to dip beneath the 1:49 barrier as he pulled four tenths clear with a late 1:48.853. Husqvarna history maker Fenati was the man in second in the session, ahead of his compatriot Tony Arbolino (Rivacold Snipers Team) a further tenth back in third.

Masia ended FP1 0.575 seconds adrift in fourth, but he had some close company courtesy of Petronas Sprinta Racing’s John McPhee. Championship leader Albert Arenas (Gaviota Aspar Team Moto3) was next up in sixth, with his closest rival as it stands, Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia), down in an uncharacteristic P25.


In the afternoon, the wind was higher to complicate life for the lightweight class, and early on Fernandez stole a few more headlines but this time with a spectacular save. Ultimately it was Masia who came out on top in FP2 though, 0.284 ahead of Darryn Binder (CIP – Green Power). Carlos Tatay (Reale Avintia Moto3) was the only other man within half a second of the top after he put in an impressive session, with the three men at the top of the Championship all a little further back: McPhee took P10, Ogura P13 and Arenas P14. For Ogura, however, that was a move forward after his P25 in FP1.

The main headlines from FP2, however, were the crashes. First to go down was Celestino Vietti (Sky Racing Team VR46) as he tumbled at Turn 3, before McPhee went down at Turn 10. Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) and Stefano Nepa (Gaviota Aspar Team Moto3) were then both caught out at Turn 1 a few minutes apart, before another crash at Turn 10, this time for Arbolino. He headed to the Medical Centre but was given the all-clear. Masia then crashed at Turn 7, before Davide Pizzoli (BOE Skull Rider Facile Energy) was the final crasher of the session, at Turn 10.

Ryusei Yamanaka (Estrella Galicia 0,0) avoided a crash with a miracle save, adding to Fernandez’ earlier efforts in the sweepstakes for biggest spectacle of the day.

After a day of two halves in Barcelona then, it’s Fernandez’ FP1 time that puts him on top once again, ahead of Masia’s FP2 fastest by 0.281. Fenati and Arbolino’s best times put them into P3 and P4 overall, respectively, with Darryn Binder ending Friday in fifth thanks to his quickest lap in the afternoon.

Despite his crash, McPhee is the fastest of the Championship-leading trio in P6, but Arenas is less than a tenth off. Both set their quickest efforts in the morning. Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) had a good first day as he slots into eighth, 0.029 off Arenas, with Tatay just another 0.033 off Antonelli, in ninth. Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) completed the top ten.

Ogura ultimately ended the day down in P23, and he’ll be one of the first pushing to improve in FP3 as the fight to head through to Q2 really gets down to business. Tune in for that at 9:00 (GMT +2), before Moto3™ qualifying starts from 12:35.

Friday Moto3 Combined Practice Times

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 R.Fernandez KTM 1m48.853
2 J.Masia HONDA +0.281
3 R.Fenati HUSQVARNA +0.390
4 T.Arbolino HONDA +0.409
5 D.Binder KTM +0.565
6 J.Mcphee HONDA +0.607
7 A.Arenas KTM +0.696
8 N.Antonelli HONDA +0.725
9 C.Tatay KTM +0.758
10 K.Toba KTM +0.773
11 G.Rodrigo HONDA +0.787
12 F.Salac HONDA +0.835
13 A.Migno KTM +0.954
14 A.Lopez HUSQVARNA +0.994
15 S.Nepa KTM +1.178
16 J.Alcoba HONDA +1.212
17 S.Garcia HONDA +1.296
18 R.Rossi KTM +1.341
19 B.Baltus KTM +1.357
20 D.Pizzoli KTM +1.393
21 D.Foggia HONDA +1.467
22 A.Sasaki KTM +1.485
23 A.Ogura HONDA +1.562
24 R.Yamanaka HONDA +1.654
25 J.Dupasquier KTM +1.729
26 C.Vietti KTM +1.752
27 J.Garcia HONDA +1.965
28 Y.Kunii HONDA +2.147
29 K.Pawi HONDA +2.226
30 M.Kofler KTM +2.251
31 D.Öncü KTM +2.347

2020 MotoGP Calendar

Rnd Date Circuit
1 08 March (Moto2/Moto3) Losail International Circuit
2 19 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
3 26 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
4 09 August Automotodrom Brno
5 16 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
6 23 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
7 13 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
8 20 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
9 27 September Barcelona – Catalunya
10 11 October Le Mans
11 18 October MotorLand Aragón
12 25 October MotorLand Aragón
13 08 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
14 15 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
15 22 November Autodromo Internacional do Algarve

MotoGP World Championship Points

Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya Schedule (AEST)

Source: MCNews.com.au

Misano MotoGP Sunday Guide | Quotes from all riders after QP

2020 MotoGP Round Seven – Misano

Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini

Misano MotoGP Sunday Stats Guide

Maverick Viñales has qualified on pole position for the second time this season along with Austria. This is Viñales’ 11th pole in the premier class (his third in Misano), one less than Johnny Cecotto.

Maverick Viñales

This is the second successive Yamaha pole position at Misano (also with Viñales last year) and their seventh pole position since the track returned to the Grand Prix calendar in 2007.

Since 2007, only three riders have won the MotoGP race after qualifying on pole position in Misano: Casey Stoner (2007), Valentino Rossi (2009) and Dani Pedrosa (2010), with only Rossi riding a Yamaha.

Franco Morbidelli has qualified in second, equalling his best qualifying result since he stepped to MotoGP in 2018, along with Spain and Japan in 2019.

Fabio Quartararo has qualified third for his 18th front row start in MotoGP. On his 17 previous front rows, he went on to finish on the podium nine times, including two wins.

Valentino Rossi, who is the most successful rider on the current MotoGP grid at Misano with three wins, heads Row 2. This is his best qualifying here since he was second in 2016, when he also finished second for his most recent podium in Misano. He equals his best qualifying of the season so far from Andalucia.

Valentino Rossi

With Maverick Viñales, Franco Morbidelli, Fabio Quartararo and Valentino Rossi, this is the first time there are four Yamaha riders within the top four on the grid in the premier class since the 1988 Portuguese GP held in Jerez with Eddie Lawson, Wayne Rainey, Kevin Magee and Christian Sarron.

Jack Miller, who is the only rider who finished on the podium in the last two races, has qualified in fifth place for the second successive time (although he started from fourth in Styria), as the top Ducati rider. He will be aiming to take three successive podiums for the first time since 2014 in Moto3.

Francesco Bagnaia, who missed the last three races due to injury, has qualified sixth for the third time this year, along with Spain and Andalucia. He crashed out last year at Misano.

Alex Rins has qualified seventh for the second successive time (although he started from sixth in Styria) which are his best qualifying results since he was also seventh in Malaysia last year.

He and team-mate Joan Mir in eighth will be aiming to become the first Suzuki riders to stand on the podium at Misano since Chris Vermeulen and John Hopkins in 2007, which is also the only time so far that two Suzuki riders were on the podium in the MotoGP era.

Misano MotoGP Podium Stoner Vermeulen Hopkins
2007 Misano MotoGP Podium – Casey Stoner P1, Chris Vermeulen P2, John Hopkins P3

Andrea Dovizioso, who has been on the podium at Misano twice in MotoGP including a win in 2018 (the last win for Ducati at the track to date), has qualified ninth. It’s the fifth time this year he has failed to qualify on the front two rows of the grid.

Takaaki Nakagami has qualified in 14th as the highest-placed Honda rider. This is the first time there is no Honda rider within the top 12 on the grid since Honda came back to the premier class of GP racing in 1982 (excluding the 1982 French GP, which was boycotted due to safety concerns).

2020 MotoGP Misano Qualifying Quotes

Maverick Vinales – P1

“I‘m really happy because that lap was amazing! Not just because it gave me pole position, but more so because of the time itself. When I saw 1‘31.4s I thought “This is a good lap time!”. We knew our potential and took everything we had, and we made a really good lap. Honestly, I‘m quite happy and impressed that at the end of the day we were so fast. Breaking the lap record was really hard for me. This morning we were still riding 1‘31.9s. We weren‘t completely sure what we would be able to do in the afternoon, but I felt so good, especially in FP4 on the hard tyre. For tomorrow, we don‘t know what will happen, but today and also on Friday we were strong, so tomorrow we are going to try to be strong again. I will push from the beginning. For sure, the race will be very long and tough, so we‘re going to try to be smart, and then we‘ll see what we can do.”

Maverick Viñales
Franco Morbidelli – P2

“I am very happy: I was trying to make a good qualifying lap and I achieved it! At the finish line I was looking at the big screen, saw myself in first and I was hoping it would be my first pole position, and at my home GP. But unfortunately Maverick was faster. Second position is still an important spot to start tomorrow’s race from in order to have a good race. I have the chance tomorrow of taking my first MotoGP win and I will be trying to stay in the mix and see what happens. I’m feeling strong, but all the Yamahas are strong here, so I think there is still a little bit I need to improve. I’m ready to fight though.”

Franco Morbidelli chasing Jack Miller
Fabio Quartararo – P3

“It is good to be back on the front row, but today has been a bit strange. It’s like last year: we were super fast in FP3 but struggled with the front end in qualifying. I am pushing a lot and am on the limit but it wasn’t enough. The most important thing, of course, is the 27-lap race. I’m feeling positive because we have the pace for victory, so let’s see what happens. I’m really looking forward to it though, really confident, because we have the pace again. I think it could be a good fight tomorrow as all of us at the front have the same bike; it could make it very interesting. I’m hoping for a great battle.”

Fabio Quartararo
Valentino Rossi – P4

“My day was good. This morning was fantastic for me, because to finish FP3 in P1 is always a great feeling in Misano. Also, I had a good pace, and I felt good with the bike. Here at this track the Yamaha is very competitive, very strong. We need to come back at the top, to fight for top positions, because the two weekends in Austria were very difficult to manage. This afternoon we tried some different things. I was not fantastic, and everybody has big doubts about the tyres, both front and rear, because the choice is very open. So, we have to see, we have to fix some things. It‘s a shame about the front row, but starting from the fourth position is still good, and our pace is not so bad. It looks like the Yamahas have a very good pace. The battle will be hard as always, because especially Maverick, but also Quartararo and Franco, have been riding very well since Friday morning, so I think that we will have to start well, have to improve for tomorrow and try to fight for the podium.”

Valentino Rossi
Jack Miller – P5

“Not a bad day, I was fast since this morning, during the FP3 I had a small crashed but I’m ok. I did a decent lap on the qualifying and tomorrow I will start from the second row, so I’m happy, I did my best and tried to be fast as possible. I’m confident for tomorrow and we will do our best like always.”

Jack Miller
Pecco Bagnaia – P6

“I’m happy for today. My goal was the top 10 and tomorrow I will start from the second row and this is an important step for us. Yesterday I didn’t push at my maximum to understand my feeling, instead today I just thought about riding and I focused on it, carefree about my leg I’m confident for tomorrow, the only question will be the 26 laps of the race, because these days I never did a long run, but I’m feel ready.”

Alex Rins – P7

“I had good feelings today, better than yesterday, and I’m happy to start on the third row. I did my best lap during qualifying and I improved quite a lot during today, also my race pace is pretty strong. I think the race will be quite complex and it will be important to gain a good position in the early laps in order to fight later in the race.”

Joan Mir – P8

“We already knew that our fast lap wasn’t quite as good as the other guys, but we worked really hard and made some improvements which have helped, and in the end the grid position is OK. Another positive thing is that my race pace in FP4 was good with used tyres, so that gives me confidence. Tomorrow morning I will work a little bit more on getting the bike stopped, and let’s see what I can do in the race, the Yamaha riders will be hard to beat but I feel I can be competitive.”

Andrea Dovizioso – P9

“I’m happy because we were finally able to improve my feeling with the bike and today we got closer to the front riders. Unfortunately, we couldn’t do better than the ninth place in qualifying; our goal today was to finish at least in the second row because here in Misano the start is short and quite narrow. Now we will try to take another step forward in tomorrow morning’s warm-up. The goal for the race tomorrow will be fighting in the top five positions.”

Andrea Dovizioso
Johann Zarco – P10

“I want to be on the top 6, because be on the two first rows are very important for the race, but I had a freaky afternoon. During the FP4, first I had a technic problem, and then I had a crash ant it was a problem because this was the bike with I had to do the qualifying. The team did an amazing job because they change a lot of things in a short time and the bike was ready to the qualifying. It was very import because a top10 is better than a last position. I think I could be fighting for the top8 with the group in tomorrow’s race.”

Pol Espargaro – P11

“The same thing: when you know you have to go to Q1 then you don’t have any tyres for Q2. I was in Q2 with a used Front, with nine laps on it already, and a new rear. I was coming around for a similar fast lap-time for the second row but I lost the front. Our problem started in FP3 where I made a mistake. It’s been a little tougher than usual to focus this weekend so far and it cost me to go to the Q2. We would have been on the second row with our Q1 lap-time but it didn’t happen again. We’ll try again tomorrow.”

Pol Espargaro
Miguel Oliveira – P12

“It was a good day of work today. We didn’t manage to do a decent time attack in FP3, so we had to go through Q1. We got through, which was nice. Then in Qualifying 2, I had only one soft tire, so I waited until the end to go out. I pushed, did my two good laps, which were close to my personal best, but not enough to be closer to the front, at least in the second or third row. The race is tomorrow, anyway, so hopefully we can have a good start to fight for the top positions.”

Aleix Espargaro – P13

“I am pleased, although the final position leaves somewhat of a bitter taste in my mouth. We improved a lot, but I missed the top 10 in FP3 by a hair and, despite a great time, I didn’t go through in Q1. I’m comforted by the fact that the truly important positions are only a couple of tenths away and that tells me that the RS-GP is a top-level project. Tomorrow will be a strange race. We’ll see all the different tyre options on the track, I think for the first time. I am happy with my pace. It seems like it is good for something more than the top 10, but we also need to consider the difficulty overtaking.”

Aleix Espargaro
Takaaki Nakagami – P14

“We’re still not really competitive and the weekend has been a bit of a struggle so far. The lap times are so tight, I just missed the top 10 in FP3 this morning and we lost a lot of time yesterday on the set-up of the bike. But in FP3 today we definitely improved the bike, it was much more consistent. In Q1 I missed out by two tenths, but we did our best, of course. The lap times are so tight, so we’ll just forget today and will try to take another step tomorrow. It will be difficult in the race because we’re not in a good position on the starting grid, but 27 laps will be a long race and you never know about tyre life, so we have a chance. We’ll do our best and something around the top eight will be good.”

Danilo Petrucci – P15

“Definitely this was not the position I expected to get today in qualifying. The gaps are always very narrow, but unfortunately, I failed to set a good lap time. In the second lap available with the new tyre, I made several mistakes that didn’t allow me to improve. My pace for the race is more consistent, but it will be crucial to be able to start well to be able to stay hooked immediately to the front and have the chance to get a good result.”

Danilo Petrucci
Brad Binder – P16

“Difficult day today. We tried a lot with the set-up and found some things that improved the feeling but in some areas we did not quite get everything together as I would have like for qualifying. The good thing is that I have a very clear idea of what I want tomorrow. I think we can try it in Warm-up. It wasn’t a great qualifying but I know we can be better in the race for sure.”

Brad Binder
Tito Rabat – P17

“It was a good day, in FP4 I really enjoyed myself, I understood things about the bike. In qualifying, in the second start, I was overconfident with the rear wheel. I think it’s not a problem with the tire, but if we find the solution it will help me to have feeling in the first laps of the race and to have a good race”.

Tito Rabat
Iker Lecuona – P18

“Today has been a really difficult day for me. In FP3 I started with used tires and did a long run to check the pace for the race. This pleased me a lot because I managed to go fast with used tires. Later when I wanted to push for a lap time in order to go direct to a Q2 spot, I crashed and then I went out with the second bike but I couldn’t do anything to improve. In Qualifying, I felt good with the bike. I pushed a lot, therefore I don’t understand, why the lap time was just not coming. I need to check the data to understand this. The important day is tomorrow. I have a good pace for the race, so I stay optimistic.”

Iker Lecuona
Stefan Bradl – P19

“We tried a lot of different things today in order to improve our feeling and speed. There’s still something to find for the race and the bike is very physical here, especially with the bumps. Hopefully we can get some early overtakes in and then ride with the others to see where they are stronger and what advantage we can take.”

Stefan Bradl
Bradley Smith – P20

“If we look at yesterday’s performance, the situation is obviously frustrating. As is often the case, the reality is a compromise. We worked well on race pace and I’m rather pleased with that in terms of our expectations. I was lacking a few tenths on the flying lap to do better in qualifying. Thanks in part to the data we’ve collected, we have reached a good base, but then sorting the final details gets more complicated. We’ll try a couple of ideas tomorrow in warmup.”

Alex Marquez – P21

“It was not an easy qualifying for us, we knew coming into this weekend that it would be tough. We got some good information in FP4 and our overall pace is better than the position on the time sheet shows. In qualifying I wasn’t able to put together a good lap, my fastest lap did not have any of my best sector times. It’s quite difficult with the bumps. The good point is that tomorrow can only improve.”

Alex Marquez
Cal Crutchlow – Declared unfit

“After yesterday I actually felt quite good riding the bike, I had no particular pain in my arm. But unfortunately the arm was swollen after riding and the fluid build-up was a lot after the session so the doctors reviewed it this morning and declared me unfit to ride, with the reason being the risk of infection with the hole being open in my arm. You can see the muscle and touch the muscle through it and the fluid build-up is not coming out, we don’t want to start draining the arm all the time because I’ll be draining it all day. So along with Alberto (Puig) and Lucio (Cecchinello) the decision was made and I think the correct decision to rest and try to see whether we can come back in Barcelona in two weeks’ time.”

MotoGP Qualifying Results

Pos Rider Bike Q Time/Gap
1 Maverick VIÑALES YAMAHA Q2 1m31.411
2 Franco MORBIDELLI YAMAHA Q2 +0.312
4 Valentino ROSSI YAMAHA Q2 +0.466
5 Jack MILLER DUCATI Q2 +0.641
6 Francesco BAGNAIA DUCATI Q2 +0.643
7 Alex RINS SUZUKI Q2 +0.679
8 Joan MIR SUZUKI Q2 +0.691
9 Andrea DOVIZIOSO DUCATI Q2 +0.773
10 Johann ZARCO DUCATI Q2 +0.807
11 Pol ESPARGARO KTM Q2 +0.855
12 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM Q2 +0.912
13 Aleix ESPARGARO APRILIA Q1 (*) 0.231
14 Takaaki NAKAGAMI HONDA Q1 (*) 0.318
15 Danilo PETRUCCI DUCATI Q1 (*) 0.354
16 Brad BINDER KTM Q1 (*) 0.470
17 Tito RABAT DUCATI Q1 (*) 0.727
18 Iker LECUONA KTM Q1 (*) 0.774
19 Stefan BRADL HONDA Q1 (*) 0.851
20 Bradley SMITH APRILIA Q1 (*) 1.102
21 Alex MARQUEZ HONDA Q1 (*) 1.269

MotoGP Qualifying Report

It was a truly spectacular second pole position of the season for Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) thanks to a new Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli lap record on Saturday, with the Spaniard’s 1:31.411 putting him ahead of second-placed Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) by 0.312. Third place went to World Championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT)… and fourth place went the way of home hero Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) – making i the first time they’ve finished 1-2-3-4 in qualifying in the MotoGP era!

Viñales was the first rider to set a flying lap time in the second qualifying session, and a 1:32.130 was a solid opening time… but it was going to be beaten. Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was sat behind Viñales on the first lap but the Spaniard ran on at the end of the back straight, before Q1’s fastest rider Pol Espagraro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) crashed at Turn 15. That brought out the yellow flags which saw Quartararo have to sit up and scrap the lap, but the Frenchman was getting the hammer down on his second time around…

Maverick Viñales

Another rider to be getting the hammer down was Free Practice pacesetter Rossi. The Doctor was further down the road from Quartararo and sure enough, the nine-time World Champion went provisional P1 to send the 10,000 Misano fans wild. However, Quartararo would soon demote Rossi to second with a 1:31.791, with the riders then pitting to push some fresh tyres in.

By this time, Viñales had slipped to P5 and was out on his lonesome on his second run. A personal best saw him stay fifth, before a faster lap then came in for the number 12. It was provisional pole, but only just – with the gap a tiny 0.004 as he then pitted again in a two-stop strategy. With the other riders back out for their second runs, Quartararo couldn’t improve his lap time on his first attempt, 0.038 the Frenchman’s deficit, as second fastest in Q1 Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech3) and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) quickly exchanging P6.

Rossi was then bang on the money but after losing two tenths in Sector 2, the Italian backed out of his lap. Compatriot Morbidelli and his team-mate Quartararo were then lighting the timesheets up in the first and second sectors, as Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) slotted himself into P6. Coming round the final sector, Morbidelli placed himself onto a dream provisional home Grand Prix pole position, and Quartararo unable to improve on his last flying lap. Was that it? Not quite…

Viñales was two-tenths under Morbidelli’s time as an absolute stunner started coming in from Top Gun. Nailing the final half of the lap to take the chequered flag with a new Misano lap record, and taking that accolade away from Yamaha test rider Jorge Lorenzo, Viñales’ time gave him plenty of clear air ahead of Morbidelli. The Italian is therefore forced to settle for a sterling second on home soil, but it’s his best qualifying result of the season.

Quartararo completes the front row, 0.380 adrift from Viñales. The 21-year-old didn’t sound too disheartened with P3 though, he’s looking strong to challenge for his third win of the season from the outside of the front row. Rossi spearheads Row 2 in P4, and that’s the number 46’s equal best Saturday afternoon result of 2020. Joining Rossi on the second row is Miller who improved on his last lap to get the better of injured teammate Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing), but both Pramac riders had an upbeat qualifying in San Marino.

Rins is the leading Suzuki in P7, the Spaniard beating teammate Joan Mir by 0.012 in Q2 and the latter – like Miller – leaping up the leaderboard on his last lap. Dovizioso, the man second in the Championship, will have to start from P9 but race day is another day – as we’ve seen a good few times from the number 04. Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing) completed the top 10, while Pol Espargaro managed to get out on his second bike after his crash and finish less than a tenth ahead of Oliveira – the Q1 graduates ending Q2 in P11 and P12.

Yamaha are back! After two tougher rounds, no one could get within a tenth and a half of the YZR-M1s in qualifying, with polesitter Viñales really laying down the gauntlet ahead of Sunday’s crucial battle. Can anyone stop the Iwata onslaught in San Marino, and if not, who comes out on top in the Yamaha dogfight?!

Moto2 Qualifying Report

Sam Lowes (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was the class of the field in Q2 at the Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, taking pole position by over two and a half tenths and smashing the lap record in the process. However, the Brit will start from pitlane on Sunday due to a penalty, promoting second-placed Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) to first on the grid. The third quickest man in Q2 was Championship leader Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46), so he’ll start second.

Q1 at Misano saw one surprise as impressive 2020 rookie Aron Canet (Oceanica Aspar Team Moto2) struggled to move through, and he’ll be on the fight back on Sunday. Heading the session though was a turnaround of fortunes for last year’s near-winner Fabio Di Giannantonio (+Ego Speed Up), the Italian moving through to the fight for pole alongside Hector Garzo (Flexbox HP 40), Joe Roberts (Tennor American Racing Team) and teammate Marcos Ramirez.

The opening flying laps in Q2 saw former lap record holder Bezzecchi sit top of the pile, before Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) took provisional pole. However, Lowes was flying and the British rider set a devilishly quick 1:36.666 to take charge, with Bezzecchi improving his time but slotting into second. Then, Lowes was going even faster – a lot faster at that. The number 22 came across the line to break the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli lap record, and no one would threaten it.

Gardner was the man closest as he shot up from nowhere into second, set to start first, with Marini slotting into third on the timesheets and therefore the first of the top Championship challengers on the grid. Fourth in the session but joining the two on the front row will be Marco Bezzecchi (Sky Racing Team VR46), who went down at the final corner – thankfully unhurt – but lost his chance to improve…

Second in the Championship, Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) will spearhead the second row, fresh from a Ducati MotoGP signature, and the Italian is set to take the battle to Marini and Bezzecchi as the Moto2 title fight looks set to heat up in Misano. Xavi Vierge’s (Petronas Sprinta Racing) sixth place in qualifying will see him start from fifth, his best qualifying result of the season and his best since the 2019 Malaysian GP., with Marcel Schrötter (Liqui Moly Intact GP) just over half a second away from Lowes in P7. The German will join Bastianini and Vierge on the second row.

2019 winner Augusto Fernandez was forced to settle for eighth in Q2, six tenths shy of his teammate’s time, the Spaniard heading Tetsuta Nagashima (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Q1 graduate Fabio Di Giannantonio, who took P9 and P10 respectively. They will therefore complete the third row.

A first pole in four years for Lowes unfortunately won’t see the number 22 line-up at the front of the grid, but the stage is set for a classic.

Sam Lowes – P1

“For me this year since, well after Qatar, I’ve been strong and felt quite good, even in Austria at a difficult track for me, I was still quick. But we have to start from pitlane tomorrow. This is racing, sometimes you have things like this but I’m happy to come here this weekend, get pole and have good pace. Hopefully we can still score some points in the race.”

Misano 2020 Moto2 front row
1 Sam Lowes – EG0,0 Marc VDS – Kalex – 1:36.170
2 Remy Gardner – ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team – Kalex +0.254
3 Luca Marini – Sky Racing Team VR46 – Kalex +0.332

Moto2 Qualifying Results

Pos Rider Bike Q Time/Gap
1 Sam LOWES KALEX Q2 1m36.170
2 Remy GARDNER KALEX Q2 +0.254
3 Luca MARINI KALEX Q2 +0.326
4 Marco BEZZECCHI KALEX Q2 +0.371
6 Xavi VIERGE KALEX Q2 +0.493
7 Marcel SCHROTTER KALEX Q2 +0.525
8 Augusto FERNANDEZ KALEX Q2 +0.658
9 Tetsuta NAGASHIMA KALEX Q2 +0.848
11 Marcos RAMIREZ KALEX Q2 +0.913
12 Thomas LUTHI KALEX Q2 +0.915
13 Jorge NAVARRO SPEED UP Q2 +0.919
14 Hafizh SYAHRIN SPEED UP Q2 +0.936
15 Hector GARZO KALEX Q2 +1.158
16 Lorenzo DALLA PORTA   ITA KALEX Q2 +1.255
17 Jake DIXON KALEX Q2 +1.265
18 Joe ROBERTS KALEX Q2 +1.496
19 Nicolò BULEGA KALEX Q1 (*) 0.129
20 Lorenzo BALDASSARRI KALEX Q1 (*) 0.130
21 Stefano MANZI MV AGUSTA Q1 (*) 0.311
22 Aron CANET SPEED UP Q1 (*) 0.383
23 Simone CORSI MV AGUSTA Q1 (*) 0.492
24 Somkiat CHANTRA KALEX Q1 (*) 0.509
25 Kasma DANIEL KALEX Q1 (*) 0.762
26 Bo BENDSNEYDER NTS Q1 (*) 0.862
27 Andi Farid IZDIHAR KALEX Q1 (*) 1.409
28 Edgar PONS KALEX Q1 (*) 2.434
29 Jesko RAFFIN NTS Q1 (*) 3.304


Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia) took his maiden pole position on Saturday at the Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, snatching the honour from Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) by just 0.016 in another tight qualifying session for Moto3. 2019 winner Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) completes the front row by an even smaller margin – with the top three covered by just 0.031 at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.

Ai Ogura (Honda Team Asia)

The fight to move through and take part in the fight for pole set the tone, with Tony Arbolino (Rivacold Snipers Team) coming out on top by less than a tenth to move through alongside Sterilgarda Max Racing Team’s Romano Fenati and Alonso Lopez, with BOE Skull Rider Facile Energy’s Ricardo Rossi the last graduate in a last minute shuffle.

In Q2 itself, the last minute dash was again the name of the game. It looked set to be another pole for Rodrigo as the flag flew, and Ogura’s laptime hadn’t initially looked like it would put him in the mix to challenge… but then came the final sector. Putting it together perfectly, the Japanese rider shot over the line and just snatched his maiden pole position.

Rodrigo was then forced to settle for second but has a nice clear view to Turn 1 on Sunday, with last year’s winner Suzuki setting himself up well for race day too in third. Andrea Migno (Sky Racing Team VR46) heads up Row 2 just behind them in a solid qualifying session, but the Italian will rue the tiny margin that kept him off the front row: 0.011.

Fenati put in Husqvarna’s best qualifying result since their return to the class this season as he lines up fifth, with Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) completing the third row. Row 3 is headed by Styria winner Celestino Vietti (Sky Racing Team VR46), with the Italian joined by Jeremy Alcoba (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) and Tony Arbolino (Rivacold Snipers Team). Filip Salač (Rivacold Snipers Team) completes the top ten.

That leaves a couple of high profile names missing… Championship leader Albert Arenas (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) will start 13th as he attempts to stop Ogura gaining on him, and third overall John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) suffered a crash early in Q2 and then ended up P17. Can they move back through to take the fight to Ogura?

2020 Misano Moto3 front row
1 Ai Ogura – Honda Team Asia – Honda – 1:42.403
2 Gabriel Rodrigo – Kömmerling Gresini Moto3 – Honda +0.016
3 Tatsuki Suzuki – SIC58 Squadra Corse – Honda – +0.031

Moto3 Qualifying Results

Pos Rider Bike Q Time/Gap
1 Ai OGURA HONDA Q2 1m42.403
2 Gabriel RODRIGO HONDA Q2 +0.016
3 Tatsuki SUZUKI HONDA Q2 +0.031
4 Andrea MIGNO KTM Q2 +0.042
5 Romano FENATI HUSQVARNA Q2 +0.201
6 Raul FERNANDEZ KTM Q2 +0.253
7 Celestino VIETTI KTM Q2 +0.378
8 Jeremy ALCOBA HONDA Q2 +0.405
9 Tony ARBOLINO HONDA Q2 +0.462
10 Filip SALAC HONDA Q2 +0.505
11 Sergio GARCIA HONDA Q2 +0.591
12 Riccardo ROSSI KTM Q2 +0.604
13 Albert ARENAS KTM Q2 +0.651
14 Jaume MASIA HONDA Q2 +0.688
15 Dennis FOGGIA HONDA Q2 +0.712
16 Stefano NEPA KTM Q2 +0.795
17 John MCPHEE HONDA Q2 +0.924
18 Alonso LOPEZ HUSQVARNA Q2 +1.315
19 Darryn BINDER KTM Q1 (*) 0.776
20 Niccolò ANTONELLI HONDA Q1 (*) 0.871
21 Ayumu SASAKI KTM Q1 (*) 1.040
22 Carlos TATAY KTM Q1 (*) 1.064
23 Davide PIZZOLI KTM Q1 (*) 1.112
24 Khairul Idham PAWI HONDA Q1 (*) 1.358
25 Kaito TOBA KTM Q1 (*) 1.374
26 Jason DUPASQUIER KTM Q1 (*) 1.473
27 Ryusei YAMANAKA HONDA Q1 (*) 1.539
28 Deniz ÖNCÜ KTM Q1 (*) 1.542
29 Barry BALTUS KTM Q1 (*) 1.578
30 Yuki KUNII HONDA Q1 (*) 1.914
31 Maximilian KOFLER KTM Q1 (*) 2.081


There was a lot to smile about for some of the home heroes after FIM Enel MotoE World Cup E-Pole at the Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, with Matteo Ferrari (Trentino Gresini MotoE) taking his very first E-Pole after snatching the honour from compatriot Mattia Casadei (Ongetta SIC58 Squadra Corse). The 2019 Cup winner and Misano victor won’t start from the front, however, with Casadei promoted to P1 as Ferrari serves a three-place grid penalty for his crash with Eric Granado (Avintia Esponsorama Racing) in Jerez. Third fastest in E-Pole was Xavier Simeon (LCR E-Team) as he pipped rookie Lukas Tulovic (Tech 3 E-Racing), but the German will move up to start alongside the Belgian on the front row.

The story of the day – as well as the polesetter, front row and penalty on the way – was a difficult E-Pole for Eric Granado as the Brazilian ran afoul of track limits and had his lap cancelled. He’ll therefore start from the back, and will be one to watch as he tries to move forward in the short dash of a MotoE race that awaits.

That drama came late as the runners headed out in the order set by their Free Practice times – with the fastest going last – creating plenty of stories throughout the field. Dominique Aegerter (Dynavolt Intact GP) wasn’t quite able to replicate his Jerez form, last year’s E-Pole winner Alex de Angelis (Octo Pramac MotoE) had a few big moments on his lap, and injury comeback kid Niki Tuuli (Avant Ajo MotoE) showed some solid signs before losing his advantage in the final sector . On Sunday, then, we can expect another incredible spectacle…

Behind the Casadei, Simeon, Tulovic front row, Ferrari will start fourth with Aegerter alongside him. Niccolo Canepa (LCR E-Team) completes that second row after a solid performance from the Italian on Saturday; the number 7 just hundredths off the Swiss rider ahead of him on the timesheets. Rookie and second in the Cup standings Jordi Torres (Pons Racing 40) heads the third row, ahead of a big leap forward for Tommaso Marcon (Tech 3 E-Racing) at Misano as he regains full fitness. The gap between the two was only 0.007!

Mike Di Meglio (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) took P9 as he looks for more in 2020, ahead of home hero Alessando Zaccone (Trentino Gresini MotoE), who completes the top ten. The Italian denied Tuuli the honour by just 0.010.

Keep an eye on those a little further back, too. After a dramatic start to his lap losing him time, Sammarinese rider de Angelis finds himself languishing in 16th and looking to move forward, and that couldn’t be more true for Granado either.  Australian Josh Hook will start from 15th place on the grid.

MotoE Qualifying Results

Pos Rider Bike Time/Gap
1 Matteo FERRARI Energica 1m43.580
2 Mattia CASADEI Energica +0.272
3 Xavier SIMEON Energica +0.372
4 Lukas TULOVIC Energica +0.447
5 Dominique AEGERTER Energica +0.626
6 Niccolo CANEPA Energica +0.641
7 Jordi TORRES Energica +0.682
8 Tommaso MARCON Energica +0.689 
9 Mike DI MEGLIO Energica +0.772
10 Alessandro ZACCONE Energica +1.107
11 Niki TUULI Energica +1.117
12 Alejandro MEDINA Energica +1.174
13 Xavi CARDELUS Energica +1.267
14 Maria HERRERA Energica +1.428
15 Josh HOOK Energica +1.582
16 Alex DE ANGELIS Energica +1.681
17 Jakub KORNFEIL Energica +2.173

MotoGP World Championship Points


Rider Bike Points
1 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 70
2 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 67
3 Jack MILLER Ducati 56
4 Brad BINDER KTM 49
5 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 48
6 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 46
7 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 45
8 Joan MIR Suzuki 44
9 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 43
11 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 32
12 Johann ZARCO Ducati 30
13 Alex RINS Suzuki 29
14 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 25
15 Alex MARQUEZ Honda 15
16 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 15
17 Iker LECUONA KTM 13
18 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 9
19 Bradley SMITH Aprilia 8
20 Tito RABAT Ducati 7
21 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 7
22 Michele PIRRO Ducati 4
23 Stefan BRADL Honda 0

2020 MotoGP Calendar

Rnd Date Circuit
1 08 March (Moto2/Moto3) Losail International Circuit
2 19 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
3 26 July Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto
4 09 August Automotodrom Brno
5 16 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
6 23 August Red Bull Ring-Spielberg
7 13 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
8 20 September Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli
9 27 September Barcelona – Catalunya
10 11 October Le Mans
11 18 October MotorLand Aragón
12 25 October MotorLand Aragón
13 08 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
14 15 November Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo
15 22 November Autodromo Internacional do Algarve

Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini Schedule

Time Class Session
1620 Moto3 WUP
1650 Moto2 WUP
1720 MotoGP WUP
1805 MotoE WUP
1900 Moto3 RACE
2020 Moto2 RACE
2200 MotoGP RACE

Source: MCNews.com.au

Sam Lowes tops Moto2 Testing | Remy Gardner on the pace

Sam Lowes tops Moto2 Testing in Qatar
Fenati takes the spoils in Moto3

Sam Lowes’ Moto2 time recorded during the weekend’s official Moto2 test session in Qatar was quick enough to have put him on pole for the MotoGP race that took place at Qatar in 2004. The new Triumph powered era of Moto2, with the much larger 765cc triple-cylinder engine compared to the CBR600RR based powerplant used in previous seasons, will surely see Moto2 lap records fall dramatically this season.

Qatar Test Moto Lowes
Sam Lowes

The Briton’s 1m58.439s on the final day enough to beat second place Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP) by a significant 0.224 seconds. Lowes’ times was more than half-a-second under the Moto2 qualifying lap record, and almost a full-second under the race lap record for the intermediate class at Losail. In fact the top 10 were under the qualifying lap record, and 19 riders were all under the previous race lap record at the 5.38 km circuit.

Qatar Test Moto Remy Gardner
Remy Gardner

Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) continued his impressive pre-season speed with third, 0.316 off P1. Gardner was fast in every session across all of the three days in Qatar, and was also well under the previous lap record. The young Australian was a full 2.5-seconds quicker on the SAG backed Kalex framed machine than he had managed last year on the Tech3 machine during qualifying for the Grand Prix of Qatar.

Fourth went the way of Augusto Fernandez (Flexbox HP 40), on 1m58.775s, with Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) just another 0.030 back in fifth.

Qatar Test Moto Navarro
Jorge Navarro

EG 0,0 Marc VDS’ Xavi Vierge ended the three-day test just ahead of Jorge Navarro (+Ego Speed Up) and Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) as the three Spaniards occupy sixth, seventh and eighth respectively.

Ninth went to Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46), his 1:58.980 putting him 0.541 off Lowes, with Day 1’s fastest rider Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) completing the top ten.

Moto2 Official Test Times – Qatar 2019

  1. Sam Lowes – Kalex 1m58.439
  2. Tom Luthi – Kalex 1m58.663
  3. Remy Gardner – Kalex 1m58.755
  4. Augusto Fernandez – Kalex 1m58.757
  5. Marcel Schrotter – Kalex 1m58.787
  6. Xavi Vierge – Kalex 1m58.880
  7. Jorge Navarro – Speed Up 1m58.923
  8. Alex Marquez – Kalex 1m58.948
  9. Luca Marini – Kalex 1m58.980
  10. Brad Binder – KTM 1m58.999
  11. Jorge Martin – KTM 1m59.039
  12. Iker Lecuona – KTM 1m59.200
  13. Nicolo Bulega – Kalex 1m59.226
  14. Tesuta Nagashima – Kalex 1m59.306
  15. Bo Bendsneyder – NTS 1m59.308
  16. Lorenzo Baldassarri – Kalex 1m59.325
  17. Andrea Locatelli – Kalex 1m59.335
  18. Enea Bastianini – Kalex 1m59.351
  19. Fabio Di Giannantonio – Speed Up 1m59.407
  20. Somkiat Chandra – Kalex 1m59.734
  21. Simone Corsi – Kalex 1m59.829
  22. Khairul Idham Pawi – Kalex 2m00.148
  23. Jesko Raffin – NTS 2m00.334
  24. Joe Roberts – KTM 2m00.414
  25. Jake Dixon – KTM 2m00.495
  26. Dominique Aegerter – MV Agusta 2m00.546
  27. Lukas Tulovic – KTM 2m00.725
  28. Marco Bezzecchi – KTM 2m00.921
  29. Philipp Oettl – KTM 2m01.337
  30. Stefano Manzi – MV Agusta 2m01.564
  31. Xavier Cardelus – KTM 2m01.656
  32. Dimas Ekky Pratama – Kalex 2m01.824


In Moto3, Romano Fenati (Snipers Team) ended the test at the top of the timesheets after going quickest on the final day, setting a best time of 2:05.285 to head teammate Tony Arbolino by 0.230. With many focusing on a fast lap – and some on trying to get a tow – it was a frantic final day of action.

Qatar Test Moto Fenati
Romano Fenat

All of the lightweight class riders, except the injured Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3), went quicker on the third and final day of testing at Losail International Circuit. But it was the Snipers Team duo who locked out the top two positions at the end of play, just like they have done on the previous two days.

Qatar Test Moto Arbolino
Tony Arbolino

Their closest challenger was Aron Canet (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team), with 0.368 splitting him from Fenati in third.

Qatar Test Moto Canet
Aron Canet

Fourth fastest was Leopard Racing’s Lorenzo Dalla Porta, the only other rider within half a second of Fenati, with Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) completing a top five covered by 0.507 seconds.

Qatar Test Moto DallaPorta
Lorenzo Dalla Porta

John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) ended the test in sixth place with a best time of 2:05.899, the British rider sitting 0.131 ahead of seventh-placed Marcos Ramirez (Leopard Racing).

Qatar Test Moto John McPhee Sasaki
John McPhee

John McPhee

“We have had three very productive days here in Qatar. We already had a good base set-up for the bike after the Jerez test but we have kept working as a team to improve the feeling even more. I am very happy with how the team is working, they have all been fantastic and step by step we have improved the lap time and our race pace. These three days we mainly focused on race pace and race setting and I feel very comfortable and consistent over a long run. We treated the second session tonight as more like a qualifying session to see what lap time we could manage and we ended up happy with the lap time because I set it on my own. It is great to finish the last test of pre-season like this.”

Qatar Test Moto McPhee
John McPhee

Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) was eighth, just ahead of Sky Racing Team VR46 duo Dennis Foggia and rookie Celestino Vietti – it was ninth and tenth on the timesheets for the Italians respectively.

Moto3 Official Test Times – Qatar 2019

  1. Romano Fenati – Honda 2m05.285
  2. Tony Arbolino – Honda 2m05.515
  3. Aron Canet – KTM 2m05.563
  4. Lorenzo Dalla Porta – Honda 2m05.771
  5. Niccolo Antonelli – Honda 2m05.792
  6. John McPhee – Honda 2m05.899
  7. Marcos Ramirez – Honda 2m06.030
  8. Tatsuki Suzuki – Honda 2m06.090
  9. Dennis Foggia – KTM 2m06.199
  10. Celestino Vietti – KTM 2m06.200
  11. Kaito Toba – Honda 2m06.206
  12. Alonso Lopez – Honda 2m06.243
  13. Kazuki Masaki – KTM 2m06.246
  14. Albert Arenas – KTM 2m06.312
  15. Ayumu Sasaki – Honda 2m06.341
  16. Darryn Binder – KTM 2m06.503
  17. Raul Fernandez – KTM 2m06.558
  18. Jakub Kornfeil – KTM 2m06.590
  19. Ai Ogura – Honda 2m06.671
  20. Gabriel Rodrigo – Honda 2m06.736
  21. Vicente Perez – KTM 2m06.787
  22. Sergio Garcia – Honda 2m06.975
  23. Can Oncu – KTM 2m06.984
  24. Filip Salac – KTM 2m07.217
  25. Makar Yurchenko – KTM 2m07.227
  26. Andrea Migno – KTM 2m07.427
  27. Riccardo Rossi – Honda 2m07.992
  28. Tom Booth-Amos – KTM 2m08.084

Source: MCNews.com.au