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Practice report
MotoGP Thailand GP

MotoGP Thailand GP: Martin tops tight second practice despite crash

MotoGP title contender Jorge Martin led the times in a tight second practice for the Thailand Grand Prix despite suffering a late crash.

Jorge Martin, Pramac Racing

The Pramac Ducati rider comes into the Buriram event 27 points adrift of factory Ducati counterpart Francesco Bagnaia after losing the victory in Australia last week on the final lap.

With under half a second covering the top 18, Martin emerged as fastest of all with a final flying effort of 1m29.826s.

However, he crashed seconds later at the Turn 3 right-handed hairpin, but he walked away unscathed.

The Aprilia duo of Maverick Vinales and Aleix Espargaro completed the top three, with Australian GP winner Johann Zarco fourth from VR46 pairing Luca Marini and last year’s poleman Marco Bezzecchi.

Bagnaia arrested his recent run of Friday Q2 exits and ended Friday seventh, ensuring a direct passage into the pole shootout session in qualifying on Saturday.

The championship leader’s sessions got off to a rocky start on Friday afternoon as some brake issues forced him to abandon his number one bike early on.

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

As this was going on, Gresini’s Fabio Di Giannantonionow favourite to replace Marc Marquez at Honda in 2024 – set the initial pace with a 1m30.945s, before Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo went top with a 1m30.835s.

Alex Marquez put Gresini back on top moments later with a 1m30.728s, which would stand as the benchmark until Vinales edged clear on his Aprilia with a 1m30.613s 25 minutes into the session.

With just under 13 minutes of the hour-long session to go, the field began switching to the medium rear tyre (the softest option in Michelin’s range in Thailand).

KTM’s Brad Binder breached the top of the timesheets with a 1m30.247s on his fresh medium rear, before improving on his follow-up tour to a 1m30.121s.

Vinales dipped underneath the 1m30s bracket with 10 minutes to go on a 1m29.924s, but it wouldn’t be enough to keep him top of the order.

With two minutes remaining, Martin snatched first away from Vinales with a 1m29.826s, before dumping his Pramac Ducati at Turn 3 as he steamed into the corner a bit too hot.

Trailing the Aprilia duo, Zarco, the VR46 pair and Bagnaia came Quartararo on the Yamaha, with Binder ninth at the chequered flag.

Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha Factory Racing

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha Factory Racing

The final direct Q2 spot went to Tech3 GasGas’s Augusto Fernandez, who denied Honda’s Marc Marquez by 0.065s.

Marquez was involved in an odd incident about halfway through the session when he was hit by a winglet broken off of Martin’s bike after he hit a pit entry marker. Though clearly in some discomfort, Marquez suffered no serious harm.

Franco Morbidelli was unable to join his Yamaha team-mate Quartararo in Q2 in 12th ahead of KTM’s Jack Miller and Di Giannantonio, while Pol Espargaro (Tech3) headed the sister factory Honda of Joan Mir in 15th.

Alex Marquez was 18th in the end, but only 0.541s off the pace, highlighting the closeness of the field in Thailand.

MotoGP Thailand GP - FP2 results

 
 
         
Driver Info
 
 
 
   
Cla Rider # Bike Laps Time Interval km/h Speed Trap
1 Spain J. Martin Pramac Racing 89 Ducati 22

1'29.826

  182.512  
2 Spain M. Viñales Aprilia Racing Team 12 Aprilia 25

+0.098

1'29.924

0.098 182.313  
3 Spain A. Espargaro Aprilia Racing Team 41 Aprilia 26

+0.160

1'29.986

0.062 182.188  
4 France J. Zarco Pramac Racing 5 Ducati 22

+0.180

1'30.006

0.020 182.147  
5 Italy L. Marini Team VR46 10 Ducati 27

+0.199

1'30.025

0.019 182.109  
6 Italy M. Bezzecchi Team VR46 72 Ducati 26

+0.208

1'30.034

0.009 182.091  
7 Italy F. Bagnaia Ducati Team 1 Ducati 23

+0.243

1'30.069

0.035 182.020  
8 France F. Quartararo Yamaha Factory Racing 20 Yamaha 26

+0.248

1'30.074

0.005 182.010  
9 South Africa B. Binder Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 33 KTM 23

+0.295

1'30.121

0.047 181.915  
10 Spain A. Fernandez Tech 3 37 KTM 24

+0.304

1'30.130

0.009 181.897  
11 Spain M. Marquez Repsol Honda Team 93 Honda 26

+0.369

1'30.195

0.065 181.766  
12 Italy F. Morbidelli Yamaha Factory Racing 21 Yamaha 24

+0.391

1'30.217

0.022 181.721  
13 Australia J. Miller Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 43 KTM 27

+0.398

1'30.224

0.007 181.707  
14 Italy F. Di Giannantonio Gresini Racing 49 Ducati 26

+0.436

1'30.262

0.038 181.631  
15 Spain P. Espargaro Tech 3 44 KTM 21

+0.442

1'30.268

0.006 181.619  
16 Spain J. Mir Repsol Honda Team 36 Honda 23

+0.469

1'30.295

0.027 181.564  
17 Spain R. Fernández RNF Racing 25 Aprilia 23

+0.517

1'30.343

0.048 181.468  
18 Spain A. Marquez Gresini Racing 73 Ducati 20

+0.541

1'30.367

0.024 181.420  
19 Italy E. Bastianini Ducati Team 23 Ducati 24

+1.089

1'30.915

0.548 180.326  
20 Japan T. Nakagami Team LCR 30 Honda 27

+1.164

1'30.990

0.075 180.178  
21 Portugal M. Oliveira RNF Racing 88 Aprilia 23

+1.278

1'31.104

0.114 179.952  

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