Phillip Island MotoGP practice: Marquez edges Vinales on Saturday

Marc Marquez edged Maverick Vinales to top the third free practice session for MotoGP's Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island

Phillip Island MotoGP practice: Marquez edges Vinales on Saturday

The newly-crowned 2018 world champion's 1m30.581s was the initial benchmark on Saturday morning, with Marquez then improving to a 1m30.110s several minutes later.

At that same point Turn 1 claimed its second victim of the weekend, Hafizh Syahrin low-siding at high speed as he went to brake into the left-hander.

The Malaysian was retrieved by safety crews, his session over on the spot as he was sent to the medical centre.

With 25 minutes to go Marquez emerged from the garage with rear hard tyre, but didn't even get around his out-lap before hitting the deck at Turn 4.

He was quickly back on his feet and back the garage after the low-speed tumble.

While that was going on Andrea Iannone took over top spot, the Suzuki rider first into the 1m29s with a 1m29.867s.

Vinales then got in on the act with 10 minutes to go, replacing Iannone with a 1m29.756s despite running a hard compound rear.

With six minutes to go Valentino Rossi became the first rider in a Q2 spot to improve on his Friday time, giving himself some breathing space with a 1m29.974s.

Jack Miller did likewise shortly afterwards, jumping to second on the third practice leaderboard with a 1m29.792s.

Two minutes from the end Marquez jumped back to the top of the session times with a 1m29.714s.

Rossi did have one crack at top spot right at the flag, setting a quickest first sector before going straight on into the run-off at Turn 4.

That secured top spot in the session for Marquez, who was left 0.04 seconds clear of Vinales.

With Miller, Iannone, and Rossi the only other riders in the 1m29s for the session, there was no change in the Q2 line-up from Friday.

Iannone, Danilo Petrucci, Vinales and Andrea Dovizioso led the way on combined times, followed by Johann Zarco, Marquez, Miller, Rins and Rossi.

Ironically Syahrin was the final man with an automatic Q2 berth, having inherited 10th on combined times after Cal Crutchlow was ruled out of the race weekend by the injuries from his Friday afternoon crash.

FP3 times

Pos Rider Team Bike Time Gap Laps
1 Marc Marquez Honda Honda 1m29.714s - 22
2 Maverick Vinales Yamaha Yamaha 1m29.756s 0.042s 22
3 Jack Miller Pramac Ducati Ducati 1m29.792s 0.078s 20
4 Andrea Iannone Suzuki Suzuki 1m29.867s 0.153s 20
5 Valentino Rossi Yamaha Yamaha 1m29.974s 0.260s 21
6 Pol Espargaro KTM KTM 1m30.221s 0.507s 22
7 Dani Pedrosa Honda Honda 1m30.259s 0.545s 20
8 Johann Zarco Tech3 Yamaha Yamaha 1m30.296s 0.582s 18
9 Alvaro Bautista Ducati Ducati 1m30.485s 0.771s 22
10 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati Ducati 1m30.580s 0.866s 20
11 Karel Abraham Aspar Ducati Ducati 1m30.720s 1.006s 19
12 Bradley Smith KTM KTM 1m30.724s 1.010s 17
13 Alex Rins Suzuki Suzuki 1m30.830s 1.116s 22
14 Takaaki Nakagami LCR Honda Honda 1m30.846s 1.132s 21
15 Xavier Simeon Avintia Ducati Ducati 1m30.973s 1.259s 20
16 Franco Morbidelli MVDS Honda Honda 1m31.047s 1.333s 19
17 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Ducati Ducati 1m31.205s 1.491s 19
18 Thomas Luthi MVDS Honda Honda 1m31.320s 1.606s 20
19 Hafizh Syahrin Tech3 Yamaha Yamaha 1m31.655s 1.941s 7
20 Aleix Espargaro Aprilia Aprilia 1m31.860s 2.146s 13
21 Jordi Torres Avintia Ducati Ducati 1m32.045s 2.331s 15
22 Mike Jones Aspar Ducati Ducati 1m32.988s 3.274s 22
23 Scott Redding Aprilia Aprilia 1m33.139s 3.425s 11

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