Bagnaia hails “best lap ever” after dominant Jerez MotoGP pole

Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia says his MotoGP Spanish Grand Prix pole lap was “my best ever” and was “perfect”, after he smashed the circuit record at Jerez in qualifying on Saturday.

Bagnaia hails “best lap ever” after dominant Jerez MotoGP pole

Bagnaia romped to his first pole of the 2022 season by 0.453 seconds from world champion Fabio Quartararo after setting a new lap record of 1m36.170s at Jerez.

Having topped both of Saturday’s practices ahead of qualifying, it vindicated Bagnaia’s claims coming into the weekend that he’d rediscovered the feeling on the front-end he’d been missing all year on the GP22.

Bagnaia explained that feeling returned last weekend in Portimao, but admits his form at Jerez was partly down to having the “luck” to have been able to race in Portugal despite having injured his shoulder in a crash that left him to start the race in last place.

“Yes, the truth is that I think it’s my best lap time ever because everything was perfect and I didn’t do any mistakes,” he said.

“So, normally when you push like this it’s easy to go a bit wide in a corner.

“But today everything was perfect. I had the luck to race in Portimao because I was feeling great again with my bike, the feeling was back in the braking.

“We started this weekend well. Every session I was improving a bit, and today also in FP4 my feeling was really good.”

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Bagnaia is yet to score a podium in 2022 having been pegged by many as a favourite for the championship pre-season.

His pace in FP4 suggests the battle for victory will be between himself and Quartararo, but Bagnaia claims simply running at the front will be the most important thing for him rather than winning at this point.

“For sure Fabio, this track is his track,” he added. “He’s always so competitive, so strong. Compared to yesterday we have closed the gap a bit to him in terms of pace.

“FP4 was really good for me in terms of speed and consistency. So, I think we can have a good fight tomorrow.

“But it’s too soon now to predict, Fabio was quick all weekend and the conditions in the race are always a bit different. So, we have to wait till tomorrow.

“For sure it will be very important of finish the race in front, but looking at my races the most important thing will be to fight.

“I don’t want to say I want to win tomorrow, because for sure I want to win tomorrow.

“But for me it will be more important to fight and to stay in front, because from the start of the season it will be the first opportunity to fight for the victory.”

shares
comments

Related video

Marquez “not disappointed” in Honda’s 2022 MotoGP bike
Previous article

Marquez “not disappointed” in Honda’s 2022 MotoGP bike

Next article

Quartararo "hasn't signed anything" for 2023 MotoGP season yet

Quartararo "hasn't signed anything" for 2023 MotoGP season yet
The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him Plus

The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him

Prior to the summer break, the 2022 MotoGP title looked like it was Fabio Quartararo’s to lose. But a crash at Assen and the consequential penalty he had to serve last weekend at Silverstone stopped him from capitalising on a main rival’s injury woes, while a resurgence from another, plus the rise of a former team-mate, look set to conspire against the Yamaha rider

MotoGP
Aug 8, 2022
Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time Plus

Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time

On the eve of the British Grand Prix, Andrea Dovizioso announced that he will be retiring from MotoGP after September’s San Marino GP. The timing of his departure raised eyebrows, but his reasoning remains sensible and what has happened this year should not diminish a hard-built legacy

MotoGP
Aug 6, 2022
Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge Plus

Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge

Alex Rins’ MotoGP future was plunged into sudden doubt when Suzuki elected to quit the series at the end of 2022. Securing a deal with Honda to join LCR, he will now tread a path that many have fallen off from. But it was a move he felt his status deserved, and it’s a challenge – he tells Autosport - he faces with his eyes wide open…

MotoGP
Jul 27, 2022
How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature Plus

How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature

The hiring of technicians from Formula 1 has clearly contributed to a recent change in the MotoGP landscape, with the role of engineers gaining greater significance relative to the riders. Here's how this shift has come about

MotoGP
Jul 19, 2022
The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader Plus

The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader

Coinciding with the arrival of Massimo Rivola as head of its MotoGP division, Aprilia has undergone an internal revolution that has spurred it from occupying last place in the team standings to leading the table in the space of just two years. Those entrenched in the project reveal how the ex-Ferrari F1 chief has achieved the dramatic turnaround

MotoGP
Jul 15, 2022
The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP Plus

The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP

Franco Morbidelli was long overdue a promotion to factory machinery when it finally came late last year, having finished runner-up in the 2020 standings on an old Yamaha package. But since then the Italian has been a shadow of his former self as he toils to adapt to the 2022 M1, and recognises that he needs to change his style to be quick on it

MotoGP
Jul 13, 2022
Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era Plus

Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era

The once all-conquering Japanese manufacturers are going through a difficult period in MotoGP this season. With Suzuki quitting, Honda struggling to get near the podium and Yamaha only enjoying success courtesy of Fabio Quartararo, Japanese manufacturers have been left in the dust by their European counterparts. Key paddock figures explain why.

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2022
Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star? Plus

Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star?

Valentino Rossi’s protégés stole the show at Assen as Francesco Bagnaia stormed to victory to arrest a recent barren run. But it was the rider in second, on Bagnaia’s old bike, who had all eyes on him. Securing his and the VR46 team’s first MotoGP podium, Marco Bezzecchi has all the characteristics that made his mentor special

MotoGP
Jun 27, 2022