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Practice report
MotoGP Australian GP

MotoGP Australian GP: KTM's Binder tops FP2, Bagnaia into Q1

Brad Binder put KTM on top of the timesheets in second practice for this weekend's MotoGP Australian Grand Prix, as championship leader Francesco Bagnaia consigned himself to a place in Q1.

Brad Binder, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing

South African rider Binder left it until the very end of the hour-long session on Friday afternoon to set the quickest lap of the day at the picturesque Phillip Island track, a 1m27.993s.

That was just over two tenths shy of last year's pole record set by Jorge Martin, and enough to beat KTM stablemate Jack Miller by 0.148 seconds.

The top spot changed hands multiple times in the closing 15 minutes of the session as riders equipped soft rear tyres to fight for one of the 10 available automatic spots in Q2.

It looked like Pramac Ducati rider Martin, who topped FP1 in the morning, was on course to sweep the day's sessions when he posted a 1m28.249s to go four tenths clear of the field, but he didn't reckon on late improvements by Maverick Vinales and Binder.

Aprilia rider Vinales went fastest on a 1m28.212s with less than four minutes on the clock, but his time at the top was short-lived as Binder became the only rider to break the 1m28s barrier with his quickest time.

Miller then overhauled Vinales to go second at his home venue, with Martin finally demoted to fourth, 0.279s off the pace.

Pol Espargaro made it three KTMs in the top five aboard his Tech3 Gas Gas-branded bike, ahead of a trio of Ducati riders, Marco Bezzecchi (VR46), Fabio Di Giannantonio (Gresini) and works team rider Enea Bastianini.

Bagging the final two places in Q2 were the second Aprilia of Aleix Espargaro, who briefly went fastest before slipping back in the closing stages, and Martin's Pramac team-mate Johann Zarco.

Bagnaia meanwhile faces the prospect of fighting his way out of Q1 for the second weekend in a row after ending up 11th, albeit almost two tenths slower than Zarco.

Marc Marquez's difficult weekend continued with another crash, as he suffered a low-speed tumble at the same point of the track where he fell in FP1, MG corner.

The Honda rider ended up way down in 16th place, beaten to the honour of being the marque's top representative by Alex Rins, who was a creditable 12th on the LCR machine.

Fabio Quartararo was 17th aboard the best of the Yamahas, with team-mate Franco Morbidelli ending up 22nd and last.

MotoGP Australian Grand Prix - second practice results:

         
Driver Info
   
Cla Rider # Bike Laps Time Interval km/h Speed Trap
1 South Africa B. Binder Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 33 KTM 25

1'27.943

182.081
2 Australia J. Miller Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 43 KTM 27

+0.148

1'28.091

0.148 181.775
3 Spain M. Viñales Aprilia Racing Team 12 Aprilia 23

+0.269

1'28.212

0.121 181.526
4 Spain J. Martin Pramac Racing 89 Ducati 26

+0.279

1'28.222

0.010 181.505
5 Spain P. Espargaro Tech 3 44 KTM 24

+0.420

1'28.363

0.141 181.216
6 Italy M. Bezzecchi Team VR46 72 Ducati 27

+0.425

1'28.368

0.005 181.205
7 Italy F. Di Giannantonio Gresini Racing 49 Ducati 27

+0.509

1'28.452

0.084 181.033
8 Italy E. Bastianini Ducati Team 23 Ducati 23

+0.510

1'28.453

0.001 181.031
9 Spain A. Espargaro Aprilia Racing Team 41 Aprilia 21

+0.513

1'28.456

0.003 181.025
10 France J. Zarco Pramac Racing 5 Ducati 25

+0.513

1'28.456

0.000 181.025
11 Italy F. Bagnaia Ducati Team 1 Ducati 25

+0.699

1'28.642

0.186 180.645
12 Spain A. Rins Team LCR 42 Honda 24

+0.701

1'28.644

0.002 180.641
13 Spain A. Fernandez Tech 3 37 KTM 24

+0.713

1'28.656

0.012 180.617
14 Spain R. Fernández RNF Racing 25 Aprilia 27

+0.716

1'28.659

0.003 180.611
15 Spain A. Marquez Gresini Racing 73 Ducati 26

+0.718

1'28.661

0.002 180.607
16 Spain M. Marquez Repsol Honda Team 93 Honda 22

+0.847

1'28.790

0.129 180.344
17 France F. Quartararo Yamaha Factory Racing 20 Yamaha 27

+0.994

1'28.937

0.147 180.046
18 Spain J. Mir Repsol Honda Team 36 Honda 23

+1.064

1'29.007

0.070 179.904
19 Italy L. Marini Team VR46 10 Ducati 24

+1.221

1'29.164

0.157 179.588
20 Portugal M. Oliveira RNF Racing 88 Aprilia 25

+1.768

1'29.711

0.547 178.493
21 Japan T. Nakagami Team LCR 30 Honda 27

+1.807

1'29.750

0.039 178.415
22 Italy F. Morbidelli Yamaha Factory Racing 21 Yamaha 21

+1.965

1'29.908

0.158 178.102

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