Italian MotoGP: Quartararo beats Bagnaia to fourth consecutive pole

Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo smashed the Mugello lap record to claim MotoGP Italian Grand Prix pole as team-mate Maverick Vinales ended up a lowly 13th after a dramatic qualifying.

Italian MotoGP: Quartararo beats Bagnaia to fourth consecutive pole

Qualifying was delayed following a serious incident in the preceding Moto3 Q2 session, with Swiss rider Jason Dupasquier airlifted to hospital in Florence for further assessment.

Jack Miller emerged from the early salvo of laps fastest with a 1m45.796s on his factory Ducati, though Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro edged ahead moments later with a 1m45.651s having utilised a tow from the sister works team Ducati of Francesco Bagnaia.

This time didn’t stand for long, however, as Quartararo – who topped FP4 ahead of qualifying – guided his Yamaha to a 1m45.481s to end the opening runs top.

Chasing his fourth-straight pole of 2021, the Frenchman blasted the field on his penultimate flying lap with a lap record of 1m45.187s.

That time went unchallenged through to the chequered flag, his nearest rival Bagnaia 0.230 seconds behind.

Johann Zarco made a late charge to secure the final spot on the front row on his Pramac Ducati, which denied Aleix Espargaro – who came through Q1 - a first MotoGP front row on the Aprilia in fourth.

Miller looked set to get onto the front row on his final lap, but ultimately could only manage fifth with his 1m45.5982 ahead of KTM’s Brad Binder, sixth comfortably his best qualifying of the year.

Binder's team-mate Miguel Oliveira was seventh ahead of the Suzuki duo of Alex Rins and Joan Mir, while Petronas SRT’s Franco Morbidelli headed Q1 pacesetter Marc Marquez and his Honda team-mate Pol Espargaro.

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Vinales was the biggest scalp to fall into Q1 after a late crash in FP3 and his strong pace throughout practice made him a target for the physically struggling Marc Marquez on the Honda to use him as a reference.

Marquez followed Vinales on both of his runs in Q1, much to the Yamaha rider’s dismay, with the Honda rider able to get into Q2 with a 1m45.924s.

Vinales was dropped from second to third by Aleix Espargaro late on in Q1 but was on course to secure passage into the pole shootout session – only a mistake at the final corner to resign him to 13th on the grid.

Missing a place in Q2 by just 0.021s, Vinales will be joined on the fifth row by Avintia rookie Enea Bastianini and LCR Honda’s Takaaki Nakagami.

Pramac stand-in Michele Pirro will start from 16th ahead of Avintia’s Luca Marini and the Tech3 KTM of 2019 Mugello race winner Danilo Petrucci.

Valentino Rossi’s miserable homecoming continued in qualifying, the Petronas SRT rider only 19th ahead of Tech3’s Iker Lecuona, Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori and the LCR Honda of Alex Marquez.

Qualifying result

Cla Rider Bike Time Gap
1 France Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 1'45.187  
2 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 1'45.417 0.230
3 France Johann Zarco Ducati 1'45.432 0.245
4 Spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'45.538 0.351
5 Australia Jack Miller Ducati 1'45.598 0.411
6 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 1'45.743 0.556
7 Portugal Miguel Oliveira KTM 1'45.745 0.558
8 Spain Alex Rins Suzuki 1'45.996 0.809
9 Spain Joan Mir Suzuki 1'46.076 0.889
10 Italy Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 1'46.084 0.897
11 Spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'46.125 0.938
12 Spain Pol Espargaro Honda 1'46.393 1.206
shares
comments

Related video

Italian MotoGP: Bagnaia on record pace in FP3, Vinales crashes into Q1

Previous article

Italian MotoGP: Bagnaia on record pace in FP3, Vinales crashes into Q1

Next article

Yamaha slams Marquez's "not fair" MotoGP qualifying tactics

Yamaha slams Marquez's "not fair" MotoGP qualifying tactics
Load comments
Why Quartararo’s Catalunya suit penalty highlights a wider issue in MotoGP Plus

Why Quartararo’s Catalunya suit penalty highlights a wider issue in MotoGP

OPINION: Fabio Quartararo racing with his leather suit open and subsequent penalty has been the main talking point of the Catalunya MotoGP weekend, which has highlighted a wider issue with MotoGP’s stewarding that risks a negative precedent going forward

MotoGP
Jun 8, 2021
How MotoGP’s “beast” tamers bounced back at Catalunya Plus

How MotoGP’s “beast” tamers bounced back at Catalunya

The expectation on KTM to replicate its winning form from 2020 this season made its difficult start to the new MotoGP campaign even more disappointing. But a key update has seen KTM's fortunes reversed over the last week and returned it to the top step of the podium in Barcelona

MotoGP
Jun 7, 2021
The signs that point to Rossi's MotoGP retirement Plus

The signs that point to Rossi's MotoGP retirement

It's not been a happy start to 2021 for Valentino Rossi at the Petronas SRT satellite squad, with performances that are a shadow of the rider that utterly dominated MotoGP at the start of the new millennium. At the age of 42, how much longer can he go on?

MotoGP
May 19, 2021
Why the most significant Le Mans MotoGP performance wasn't Miller's Plus

Why the most significant Le Mans MotoGP performance wasn't Miller's

Hot on the heels of his first MotoGP win in five years, Jack Miller made it two from two with a commanding French Grand Prix victory at Le Mans despite two long-lap penalties. Impressive though it was, it was an expectation-defying performance from an anticipated title rival that was the real standout

MotoGP
May 17, 2021
The impossible problem Honda faces with its 2021 MotoGP bike Plus

The impossible problem Honda faces with its 2021 MotoGP bike

Honda hasn’t enjoyed an easy start to the 2021 MotoGP campaign, despite gains last season which looked to have carried over into the pre-season. Now admitting it does have issues in serious need of resolving, it faces an almost impossible task in doing so

MotoGP
May 11, 2021
How Jerez underlined MotoGP's speed problem Plus

How Jerez underlined MotoGP's speed problem

The brutal nature of a series of crashes at Jerez has reopened the debate about whether current MotoGP speeds are beyond the safety limits of the tracks. But even if riders are supportive of the move, getting the manufacturers to find a consensus on how speed reductions should be achieved may be altogether harder

MotoGP
May 4, 2021
How a Crutchlow helped Miller to Jerez MotoGP redemption Plus

How a Crutchlow helped Miller to Jerez MotoGP redemption

Jack Miller’s tough start to life as a factory Ducati MotoGP rider left him mentally battered and bruised, but a pep talk and positive reinforcement from a surprising source aided the Australian to show his full potential with victory at the Spanish Grand Prix

MotoGP
May 3, 2021
What does Marc Marquez have to do to get back to his best? Plus

What does Marc Marquez have to do to get back to his best?

Following his resounding MotoGP return with a seventh place finish in Portugal, Marc Marquez now must work to rediscover his best form before turning his attention towards results-based targets

MotoGP
Apr 20, 2021