Catalunya MotoGP: Morbidelli pips Quartararo in FP3, Miller to Q1

Franco Morbidelli pipped Fabio Quartararo to top spot in a tight FP3 for the MotoGP Catalan Grand Prix as Ducati’s Jack Miller will have to go through Q1 in qualifying.

Catalunya MotoGP: Morbidelli pips Quartararo in FP3, Miller to Q1

Perfect conditions for the start of FP3 meant several riders improved on their Friday lap times in the early stages of the session.

Significantly inside the top 10, KTM’s Miguel Oliveira and his team-mate Brad Binder were big movers.

Oliveira shot up from 14th to fifth in the opening moments with a 1m39.677s, improving to fourth overall and fastest in the session with a 1m39.448s, while Binder settled into fifth spot.

After the first 10 minutes, Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales had also found time compared to his Friday best, though remained seventh.

It wouldn’t be for another 10 minutes until another big move inside the top 10 occurred, when Suzuki’s Joan Mir improved from 16th to sixth with a 1m39.705s on a fresh set of medium tyres.

A further 10 minutes after that, championship leader Quartararo fitted fresh softs to his factory Yamaha for an assault on the top of the timesheet.

On his first lap, Quartararo took over from Pramac Ducati’s Johann Zarco on the combined times with a 1m39.168s before setting the first sub-1m39s lap of the weekend with a 1m38.975s.

This looked set to keep him on top as the chequered flag brought the session to a close, but former team-mate Morbidelli on the two-year-old SRT M1 put Quartararo’s lap under pressure on his final lap.

Morbidelli produced a 1m38.929s to end the morning 0.046 seconds clear of Quartararo to secure direct passage to Q2 in qualifying this afternoon.

Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha Factory Racing

Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

KTM’s resurgence at the Italian GP has continued into Barcelona as Oliveira completed the top three, while Francesco Bagnaia is currently the only factory team Ducati rider in Q2 after a last-gasp 1m39.073s lifted him from 14th to fourth.

Read Also:

Aleix Espargaro completed the top five on combined times on the Aprilia, ahead of Binder, while Zarco will go directly through to Q2 in seventh on the combined order despite not improving on his Friday lap in FP3 – which left him 15th in the session.

Completing the top 10 on the combined order was Vinales, Mir and the second SRT Yamaha of Valentino Rossi, while Miller was denied a place in Q2 by just 0.069 seconds.

Honda’s struggles at the low-grip Catalunya track continued into Saturday, with none of its riders able to get into Q2 directly from FP3.

Takaaki Nakagami was the best HRC runner on his LCR-run RC213V in 12th on the combined times ahead of factory rider Pol Espargaro, while Marc Marquez was 15th and the second LCR rider Alex Marquez 18th.

Avintia rookie Enea Bastianini was unable to better his FP2 time in 19th on combined times after crashing early on at the Turn 5 left-hander.

Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori propped up the 21-rider field after taking a tumble at the Turn 4 right in the closing stages. 

MotoGP Catalan GP FP3 results:

Cla Rider Bike Time Gap
1 Italy Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 1'38.929  
2 France Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 1'38.975 0.046
3 Portugal Miguel Oliveira KTM 1'39.051 0.122
4 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 1'39.073 0.144
5 Spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'39.079 0.150
6 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 1'39.166 0.237
7 Spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 1'39.282 0.353
8 Spain Joan Mir Suzuki 1'39.324 0.395
9 Italy Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1'39.426 0.497
10 Australia Jack Miller Ducati 1'39.495 0.566
11 Japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'39.498 0.569
12 Spain Pol Espargaro Honda 1'39.519 0.590
13 Italy Danilo Petrucci KTM 1'39.689 0.760
14 Spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'39.701 0.772
15 France Johann Zarco Ducati 1'39.760 0.831
16 Spain Jorge Martin Ducati 1'39.816 0.887
17 Spain Iker Lecuona KTM 1'39.918 0.989
18 Spain Alex Marquez Honda 1'39.928 0.999
19 Italy Luca Marini Ducati 1'40.075 1.146
20 Italy Enea Bastianini Ducati 1'40.743 1.814
21 Italy Lorenzo Savadori Aprilia 1'41.180 2.251
shares
comments

Related video

The MotoGP enigma who needs to step up at Catalunya
Previous article

The MotoGP enigma who needs to step up at Catalunya

Next article

Yamaha, SRT already looking at Rossi MotoGP replacements

Yamaha, SRT already looking at Rossi MotoGP replacements
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
How Quartararo is evoking an absent MotoGP great in 2022 Plus

How Quartararo is evoking an absent MotoGP great in 2022

OPINION: Fabio Quartararo has seized control of the 2022 MotoGP world standings after another dominant victory as his nearest rivals faltered. And he is very much heading towards a second championship echoing how the dominator of the last decade achieved much of his success

MotoGP
Jun 20, 2022
The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence Plus

The human importance of Marquez’s latest enforced MotoGP absence

OPINION: Marc Marquez will likely sit out the remainder of the 2022 MotoGP season to undergo a fourth major operation on the right arm he badly broke in 2020. It is hoped it will return him to his brilliant best after a tough start to the season without a podium to his name. But it’s the human victory that will far outweigh any future on-track success he may go on to have

MotoGP
May 31, 2022
Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma Plus

Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma

OPINION: The French Grand Prix looks to have made Ducati’s decision on its factory team line-up simpler, as Enea Bastianini stormed to his third win of the campaign and Jorge Martin crashed out for a fifth time in 2022. But, as Ducati suggests to Autosport, it remains in the strongest position in a wild rider market

MotoGP
May 16, 2022
The seismic aftershock left by Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP Plus

The seismic aftershock left by Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP

Suzuki's sudden decision to leave the MotoGP World Championship at the end of the season has acted as a stirring element in a market that had already erupted. Autosport analyses what this means for the grid going into 2023

MotoGP
May 11, 2022
How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP’s Spanish GP Plus

How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP’s Spanish GP

Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP bike has had a tough start to life and the expected early-season title charge from Francesco Bagnaia did not materialise. But the Spanish Grand Prix signalled a turning point for both the GP22 and Bagnaia, as the 2021 runner-up belatedly got his season underway after a straight fight with Fabio Quartararo

MotoGP
May 2, 2022
How Honda's praise for its 2022 MotoGP bike has turned into doubt Plus

How Honda's praise for its 2022 MotoGP bike has turned into doubt

In a little over two months, Honda has gone from setting the pace in MotoGP testing with its new RC213V prototype to being at a crossroads - caused by the discrepancy in its riders' feedback. After a Portuguese GP that underwhelmed, serious questions are now being asked of Honda in 2022

MotoGP
Apr 26, 2022