Australian MotoGP: Honda's Marquez fastest in FP3, Lorenzo last

Marc Marquez topped a frenetic third practice session for the Australian Grand Prix, which sentenced a host of big MotoGP names to the first phase of qualifying in mixed conditions

Australian MotoGP: Honda's Marquez fastest in FP3, Lorenzo last

The newly-crowned champion set his time of 1m33.155s in the final window of improvement early in the second half of the session, which was brought forward by an hour and extended by 15 minutes after Friday's washout at Phillip Island.

Marquez finished 0.054 seconds ahead of local hope Jack Miller, while the likes of Maverick Vinales, Valentino Rossi, Cal Crutchlow and Jorge Lorenzo - who finished last - will have to contest Q1.

Improved conditions on Saturday morning and the constant threat of more rain resulted in a mini-shootout at the start of the hour, on a largely-dry track surface.

Times quickly eclipsed the Friday benchmark set by Crutchlow in the wet, even before Marquez set a 1m33.661s on intermediate tyres seven minutes in.

That effort was 4.557s clear of the pack, and he improved again the next time around to 1m33.304s, as some of his rivals started to make inroads.

Other riders had headed to pitlane as light rain started to fall again, the likes of Yamaha's Rossi and Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso opting to match Marquez's intermediate strategy, but with Miller the first to gamble on slicks.

Honda injury fill-in Nicky Hayden slotted into second place, but was displaced by Miller who found a groove on slicks to close to within 0.729s of Marquez.

A flurry of times followed, but with riders on a medley of slicks, intermediates and even full wets, as drizzle came and went.

At the halfway stage, Marquez led Miller, Hayden, Dovizioso and Alvaro Bautista, who crashed at the first corner moments after Aprilia team-mate Stefan Bradl fell at Turn 4, amid what was then the most-meaningful of the rain.

Meanwhile, Rossi was 11th, Yamaha team-mate Lorenzo 14th and Suzuki pair Aleix Espargaro and Vinales 19th and 20th, Vinales having fallen entering pitlane 15 minutes in.

Conditions remained clear enough for another batch of improvements early in the second half.

Still on slicks, Marc VDS Honda's Miller moved to the top with a 1m33.280s with 22 minutes remaining, then lowered the benchmark to 1m33.209s.

Marquez got back ahead with a 1m33.155s, on an intermediate front and slick rear, which was ultimately good enough to finish on top.

Before rain returned with 19 minutes to go, Aleix Espargaro and brother Pol Espargaro vaulted up the order to finish third and fourth, ahead of Dovizioso.

Pramac Ducati's Scott Redding jumped up from last to sixth just before the heavens opened again, with Bradl, Hayden, Danilo Petrucci and Dovizioso's temporary factory Ducati team-mate Hector Barbera completing the top 10.

Outside that, and set to contest the first phase of qualifying, Vinales improved to run as high as fourth, before falling back to 11th, one spot ahead of Rossi.

LCR Honda's Crutchlow tried slicks tyres in the first half of the session but ultimately wound up 15th, while Lorenzo was 21st and last, 5.163s slower than Marquez, having headed out on slicks moments the final heavy shower.

PRACTICE THREE RESULTS:

Pos Rider Team Time Gap Laps
1 Marc Marquez Honda 1m33.155s - 9
2 Jack Miller Marc VDS Honda 1m33.209s 0.054s 15
3 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki 1m34.399s 1.244s 12
4 Pol Espargaro Tech3 Yamaha 1m34.650s 1.495s 11
5 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1m34.721s 1.566s 12
6 Scott Redding Pramac Ducati 1m34.852s 1.697s 11
7 Stefan Bradl Aprilia 1m34.914s 1.759s 12
8 Nicky Hayden Honda 1m35.189s 2.034s 14
9 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Ducati 1m35.269s 2.114s 11
10 Hector Barbera Ducati 1m35.300s 2.145s 12
11 Maverick Vinales Suzuki 1m35.364s 2.209s 13
12 Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1m35.463s 2.308s 15
13 Eugene Laverty Aspar Ducati 1m35.736s 2.581s 14
14 Alvaro Bautista Aprilia 1m36.029s 2.874s 11
15 Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda 1m36.189s 3.034s 12
16 Bradley Smith Tech3 Yamaha 1m36.351s 3.196s 9
17 Yonny Hernandez Aspar Ducati 1m36.447s 3.292s 11
18 Mike Jones Avintia Ducati 1m36.756s 3.601s 15
19 Loris Baz Avintia Ducati 1m37.193s 4.038s 17
20 Tito Rabat Marc VDS Honda 1m38.012s 4.857s 9
21 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 1m38.318s 5.163s 22


shares
comments
MotoGP Saturday FP3 session extended after Friday washout

Previous article

MotoGP Saturday FP3 session extended after Friday washout

Next article

Australian MotoGP: Marquez on pole from Crutchlow, Yamahas struggle

Australian MotoGP: Marquez on pole from Crutchlow, Yamahas struggle
Load comments
How Ducati has developed MotoGP's most versatile bike Plus

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 Plus

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
How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest Plus

How ‘El Diablo’ and ‘the Beast’ starred in MotoGP’s Misano contest

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

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

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

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

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

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge Plus

How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge

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

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021