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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Alex Marquez takes maiden pole after slick gamble in moist session

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The youthful Marquez brother has not headed a grid since his title-winning Moto2 season in 2019, with the Gresini rider discovering life in MotoGP largely robust going since stepping up in 2020 with Honda.

Marquez led Fabio Quartararo via Q1, however crashed at Flip 13 on his ultimate lap as he tried to cross Honda’s Joan Mir.

That wasn’t sufficient to disclaim him prime spot in Q1, although the crash left his bike with injury whereas a hearth erupted across the stomach pan as he tried to experience again to pitlane, leaving him with only one bike for Q2.

Playing on slicks within the closing levels on Q2 because the rain-hit monitor slowly dried, Alex Marquez produced a 1m43.881s to guide a Ducati 1-2-3 forward of Marco Bezzecchi and championship chief Francesco Bagnaia.

Cut up tyre methods led to an enormous gulf in lap occasions in Q2, with fourth-placed Franco Morbidelli the very best positioned moist tyre runner in fourth – 2.1s off the tempo.

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Regardless of a powerful Friday, Aprilia might solely qualify as excessive as fifth with Maverick Vinales, as Aleix Espargaro struggled to ninth forward of Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo.

The rainfall which had affected Q1 had disappeared for the beginning of the 15-minute pole shootout session.

Yamaha’s Morbidelli set the early tempo on rain tyres with a 1m47.082s, although was rapidly usurped by Pramac Ducati’s Johann Zarco.

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Crew

Photograph by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Because the monitor slowly dried, a lot of riders elected to pit for slick tyres, with Marquez, Bagnaia and Bezzecchi taking the gamble as the remaining stayed on wets.

Morbidelli, who’d elected to remain on rain tyres, blitzed the sector with just below two minutes to go together with a 1m45.982s.

Staring down a primary pole since 2020, Morbidelli’s stint on the head of the sector wouldn’t final lengthy because the slick runners started to mild up the timing display screen with session-best sectors.

VR46 Ducati rider Bezzecchi was first on the highway on slicks and took provisional pole with a 1m44.053s on his ultimate lap.

However behind him, Marquez on the Gresini-run Ducati was besting his sector occasions and hooked it collectively to supply a 1m43.881s to attain a shock maiden pole.

Bagnaia accomplished the highest three, 0.858s off the tempo, with Morbidelli shuffled again to the top of row two from Vinales and Zarco.

Luca Marini will begin seventh for this afternoon’s dash and Sunday’s grand prix on the second of the VR46 Ducatis forward of Pramac’s Jorge Martin and Aleix Espargaro.

Quartararo struggled when the monitor dried out in direction of the tip of Q1 and will solely handle tenth, with LCR Honda duo Takaaki Nakagami and Alex Rins finishing the highest 12.

RNF Aprilia’s Raul Fernandez tried to gamble on slicks at first of the moist Q1, however nonetheless managed to qualify thirteenth when switched to the rain tyres.

He beat Gresini’s Fabio Di Giannantonio, with manufacturing unit KTM duo Brad Binder and Jack Miller, Tech3 rookie Augusto Fernandez and Mir rounding out the depleted 18-rider discipline.

The dash race will begin at 7pm BST.

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