It was a truly spectacular second pole position of the season for Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) thanks to a new Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli lap record on Saturday, with the Spaniard’s 1:31.411 putting him ahead of second-placed Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) by 0.312. Third place went to World Championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT)… and fourth place went the way of home hero Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) – making i the first time they’ve finished 1-2-3-4 in qualifying in the MotoGP™ era!
Viñales was the first rider to set a flying lap time in the second qualifying session, and a 1:32.130 was a solid opening time… but it was going to be beaten. Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was sat behind Viñales on the first lap but the Spaniard ran on at the end of the back straight, before Q1’s fastest rider Pol Espagraro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) crashed at Turn 15. That brought out the yellow flags which saw Quartararo have to sit up and scrap the lap, but the Frenchman was getting the hammer down on his second time around…
Another rider to be getting the hammer down was Free Practice pacesetter Rossi. The Doctor was further down the road from Quartararo and sure enough, the nine-time World Champion went provisional P1 to send the 10,000 Misano fans wild. However, Quartararo would soon demote Rossi to second with a 1:31.791, with the riders then pitting to push some fresh tyres in.
By this time, Viñales had slipped to P5 and was out on his lonesome on his second run. A personal best saw him stay fifth, before a faster lap then came in for the number 12. It was provisional pole, but only just – with the gap a tiny 0.004 as he then pitted again in a two-stop strategy. With the other riders back out for their second runs, Quartararo couldn’t improve his lap time on his first attempt, 0.038 the Frenchman’s deficit, as second fastest in Q1 Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech3) and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) quickly exchanging P6.
Rossi was then bang on the money but after losing two tenths in Sector 2, the Italian backed out of his lap. Compatriot Morbidelli and his teammate Quartararo were then lighting the timesheets up in the first and second sectors, as Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) slotted himself into P6. Coming round the final sector, Morbidelli placed himself onto a dream provisional home Grand Prix pole position, and Quartararo unable to improve on his last flying lap. Was that it? Not quite…
Viñales was two tenths under Morbidelli’s time as an absolute stunner started coming in from Top Gun. Nailing the final half of the lap to take the chequered flag with a new Misano lap record, and taking that accolade away from Yamaha test rider Jorge Lorenzo, Viñales’ time gave him plenty of clear air ahead of Morbidelli. The Italian is therefore forced to settle for a sterling second on home soil, but it’s his best qualifying result of the season.
Quartararo completes the front row, 0.380 adrift from Viñales. The 21-year-old didn’t sound too disheartened with P3 though, he’s looking strong to challenge for his third win of the season from the outside of the front row. Rossi spearheads Row 2 in P4, and that’s the number 46’s equal best Saturday afternoon result of 2020. Joining Rossi on the second row is Miller who improved on his last lap to get the better of injured teammate Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing), but both Pramac riders had an upbeat qualifying in San Marino.
Rins is the leading Suzuki in P7, the Spaniard beating teammate Joan Mir by 0.012 in Q2 and the latter – like Miller – leaping up the leaderboard on his last lap. Dovizioso, the man second in the Championship, will have to start from P9 but race day is another day – as we’ve seen a good few times from the number 04. Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing) completed the top 10, while Pol Espargaro managed to get out on his second bike after his crash and finish less than a tenth ahead of Oliveira – the Q1 graduates ending Q2 in P11 and P12.
Yamaha are back! After two tougher rounds, no one could get within a tenth and a half of the YZR-M1s in qualifying, with polesitter Viñales really laying down the gauntlet ahead of Sunday’s crucial battle. Can anyone stop the Iwata onslaught in San Marino, and if not, who comes out on top in the Yamaha dogfight?!
You know what to do – tune in for the MotoGP™ race at 14:00 local time (GMT+2) to see what twists and turns lie ahead on race day… and in the title fight.
Andrea Dovizioso will start from the third row of the grid in the Lenovo Grand Prix of San Marino and the Rimini Riviera scheduled for tomorrow in Misano Adriatico. Danilo Petrucci ends the day with the fifteenth time
The Ducati Team riders Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci will start from the third and fifth rows of the grid respectively in the Lenovo Grand Prix of San Marino and the Rimini Riviera, that will be held tomorrow on a 27-lap distance at Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”.
After having gained direct access to Q2, finishing 10th in FP3 this morning, Andrea Dovizioso had to settle in ninth place (1:32.184) in the official qualifying. At the end of the day, however, the rider from Forlì has declared to be satisfied with the work done together with his team as he was finally able to find a good feeling with his Ducati Desmosedici GP20 bike.
Danilo Petrucci, who was 15th at the end of this morning’s third free practice session, had to take part, therefore, in Q1 where he wasn’t able to do a clean lap in the last minutes available, finishing fifth in 1:32.418. Tomorrow, Petrucci will start then from the fifth row of the grid, from the fifteenth position.
Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Ducati Team) – 1:32.184 (9th)
“I’m happy because we were finally able to improve my feeling with the bike and today we got closer to the front riders. Unfortunately, we couldn’t do better than the ninth place in qualifying; our goal today was to finish at least in the second row because here in Misano the start is short and quite narrow. Now we will try to take another step forward in tomorrow morning’s warm-up. The goal for the race tomorrow will be fighting in the top five positions.”
Danilo Petrucci (#9 Ducati Team) – 1:32.418 (15th)
“Definitely this was not the position I expected to get today in qualifying. The gaps are always very narrow, but unfortunately, I failed to set a good lap time. In the second lap available with the new tyre, I made several mistakes that didn’t allow me to improve. My pace for the race is more consistent, but it will be crucial to be able to start well to be able to stay hooked immediately to the front and have the chance to get a good result”.
Tomorrow at 9:20 AM, the Ducati Team riders will take to the track for the last twenty minutes of Warm Up before the race that will start at 2:00 PM local time
Fourth row for Espargaro & Oliveira after San Marino MotoGP™ qualifier
MotoGP 2020 – Round 06, Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli (San Marino, Italy)
Pol Espargaro will set off from 11th position on the grid at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli and came through Q2 Qualification just ahead of fellow Red Bull KTM racer Miguel Oliveira in 12th for what will be the sixth round of 2020 MotoGP on Sunday.
Espargaro and Styrian GP winner Oliveira make the Q1 cut to Q2 but Espargaro crashes in fast lap attempt
Brad Binder and Iker Lecuona to occupy 16th and 18th grid positions respectively
Three KTM RC4s in the top seven of Moto3 with Andrea Migno in 4th
The first of nine MotoGP rounds in the next eleven weeks began with a sunny Qualification session at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli. The Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini represents the opening event of two back-to-back races at the resurfaced but bumpy eastern Italian venue.
After setting decent pace through Free Practice Espargaro made a mistake in FP3 that meant he had to head into Q1 early Saturday afternoon. The Spaniard emerged as the fastest rider with his KTM RC16 in the session but was then limited with tire choice for Q2. A fall at Turn 15 ended his push for the first two rows. Teammate Brad Binder enjoyed a much faster pace compared to his test appearance at Misano in June but the South African still needed to work on optimum race bike set-up and did not make the Q2 selection.
Red Bull KTM Tech3 duo Miguel Oliveira and Iker Lecuona both caught the eye during Friday and Saturday. The Portuguese slotted behind Espargaro in Q1 and also classified on his brandmates rear wheel at the second attempt in Q2. Lecuona reached as high as 4th fastest in FP2 on Friday but an error in FP3 proved costly and he couldn’t find the same speed through Q1.
The MotoGP race consists of 27 laps of the 4.2km layout at 14.00 CET on Sunday.
Pol Espargaro: “The same thing: when you know you have to go to Q1 then you don’t have any tyres for Q2. I was in Q2 with a used Front, with nine laps on it already, and a new rear. I was coming around for a similar fast lap-time for the second row but I lost the front. Our problem started in FP3 where I made a mistake. It’s been a little tougher than usual to focus this weekend so far and it cost me to go to the Q2. We would have been on the second row with our Q1 lap-time but it didn’t happen again. We’ll try again tomorrow.”
Brad Binder: “Difficult day today. We tried a lot with the set-up and found some things that improved the feeling but in some areas we did not quite get everything together as I would have like for qualifying. The good thing is that I have a very clear idea of what I want tomorrow. I think we can try it in Warm-up. It wasn’t a great qualifying but I know we can be better in the race for sure.”
Miguel Oliveira: “It was a good day of work today. We didn’t manage to do a decent time attack in FP3, so we had to go through Q1. We got through, which was nice. Then in Qualifying 2, I had only one soft tire, so I waited until the end to go out. I pushed, did my two good laps, which were close to my personal best, but not enough to be closer to the front, at least in the second or third row. The race is tomorrow, anyway, so hopefully we can have a good start to fight for the top positions.”
Iker Lecuona: “Today has been a really difficult day for me. In FP3 I started with used tires and did a long run to check the pace for the race. This pleased me a lot because I managed to go fast with used tires. Later when I wanted to push for a lap time in order to go direct to a Q2 spot, I crashed and then I went out with the second bike but I couldn’t do anything to improve. In Qualifying, I felt good with the bike. I pushed a lot, therefore I don’t understand, why the lap time was just not coming. I need to check the data to understand this. The important day is tomorrow. I have a good pace for the race, so I stay optimistic.”
Moto2 & Moto3
Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Raul Fernandez was 6th fastest in Moto3 Q2 and just over 0.2 seconds away from a third consecutive Pole Position. The Spaniard was the second-best KTM racer as Andrea Migno placed his KTM RC4 in 4th and at the front of the second row. In Moto2 Red Bull KTM Ajo Tetsuta Nagashima was 9th in the Q2 session. Jorge Martin was declared unfit to race after a positive COVID-19 test and is taking the appropriate safety measures to make a healthy return to action.
Races: September 13th 23rd, 2020 – Moto3 11.00 | Moto2 12.20 | MotoGP 14.00 CET
Results Qualifying MotoGP Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini 2020
1. Maverick Viñales (ESP) Yamaha 1:31.411
2. Franco Morbidelli (ITA) Yamaha +0.312
3. Fabio Quartararo (FRA) Yamaha +0.380
4. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha +0.466
5. Jack Miller (AUS) Ducati +0.641
11. Pol Espargaro (ESP) Red Bull KTM +0.855
12. Miguel Oliveira (POR) Red Bull KTM Tech3 +0.912
16. Brad Binder (RSA) Red Bull KTM (Q1) 1:32.524
18. Iker Lecuona (ESP) Red Bull KTM Tech3 (Q1) 1:32.838
Results Qualifying Moto2 Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini 2020
1. Sam Lowes (GBR) 1:36.170
2. Remy Gardner (AUS) +0.254
3. Luca Marini (ITA) +0.326
9. Tetsuta Nagashima (JPN) Red Bull KTM Ajo +0.848
Results Qualifying Moto3 Gran Premio Lenovo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini 2020
1. Ai Ogura (JPN) Honda 1:42.403
2. Gabriel Rodrigo (ARG) Honda +0.016
3. Tatsuki Suzuki (JPN) Honda +0.031
Repsol Honda (Remember them?)
Determined Bradl pushes until the end
A trying day in San Marino for the Repsol Honda Team as they hunt one-lap pace.
Conditions on the Italian coast remained almost identical to the day before, the heat and sun making the day even more physically demanding for riders up and down the grid. The bumps on the newly resurfaced circuit also proved to be a major challenge.
Stefan Bradl continued to improve with each session out on track, the German setting his best lap on his final run across the line Q1. Just behind Repsol Honda Team team-mate Alex Marquez on track, the HRC Test Rider dipped into the 1’32s for the first time. A 1’32.915 will see Bradl start the 27-lap race from the head of the seventh row.
One lap pace continued to be the biggest hurdle for Alex Marquez as Free Practice 4 saw the rookie set consistent times and gather important data for later. Unable to better his 1’33.251 from FP3 during Q1 on the bumpy Misano circuit, Alex Marquez is looking to get aggressive in the opening laps of Sunday’s race.
The Gran Premio di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini starts at 14:00 Local Time on Sunday, September 13.
“We tried a lot of different things today in order to improve our feeling and speed. There’s still something to find for the race and the bike is very physical here, especially with the bumps. Hopefully we can get some early overtakes in and then ride with the others to see where they are stronger and what advantage we can take.”
“It was not an easy qualifying for us, we knew coming into this weekend that it would be tough. We got some good information in FP4 and our overall pace is better than the position on the time sheet shows. In qualifying I wasn’t able to put together a good lap, my fastest lap did not have any of my best sector times. It’s quite difficult with the bumps. The good point is that tomorrow can only improve”
BATTLE WITHIN THOUSANDTHS OF A SECOND AT MISANO ADRIATICO
GOOD PACE FOR ALEIX WHO WILL START FROM THE FIFTH ROW
The qualifiers in Misano played out within the range of thousandths of a second for Aprilia. In fact, only 149 thousandths kept Aleix from pre-qualifying for Q2 in FP3, whereas in Q1, just 83 thousandths denied him the chance to battle for a spot on the first four rows. As the top excluded rider, the Spaniard will start from the fifth row tomorrow astride his RS-GP. That is where his hunt for a top-10 position will begin, supported by the good pace he demonstrated on used tyres.
Bradley Smith’s weekend took a complicated turn, crashing without consequences during the third free practice session and slightly less incisive compared to the good performance he demonstrated yesterday. Bradley will take advantage of the warmup session tomorrow morning to shave off a few precious tenths in preparation for the race.
“I am pleased, although the final position leaves somewhat of a bitter taste in my mouth. We improved a lot, but I missed the top 10 in FP3 by a hair and, despite a great time, I didn’t go through in Q1. I’m comforted by the fact that the truly important positions are only a couple of tenths away and that tells me that the RS-GP is a top-level project. Tomorrow will be a strange race. We’ll see all the different tyre options on the track, I think for the first time. I am happy with my pace. It seems like it is good for something more than the top 10, but we also need to consider the difficulty overtaking.”
“If we look at yesterday’s performance, the situation is obviously frustrating. As is often the case, the reality is a compromise. We worked well on race pace and I’m rather pleased with that in terms of our expectations. I was lacking a few tenths on the flying lap to do better in qualifying. Thanks in part to the data we’ve collected, we have reached a good base, but then sorting the final details gets more complicated. We’ll try a couple of ideas tomorrow in warmup.”
GRAND PRIX OF SAN MARINO E DELLA RIVIERA DI RIMINI
Yamaha enjoyed a very successful outing at the Gran Premio di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini today. Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Maverick Viñales scored pole position, setting a new All Time Lap Record, and headed the first ever top-4 all-Yamaha lockout in a qualifying session, rounded out by Valentino Rossi.
Philip Island Circuit
LOCAL TIME: 14:35 GMT+2
AIR TEMPERATURE: 30°C
TRACK TEMPERATURE: 42°C
WEATHER: SUNNY / HUMIDITY 52%
MORE CIRCUIT INFO
1’31.411 / 9 LAPS
1’31.877 / 8 LAPS
The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team showed their strong hand at the Gran Premio di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini today. Maverick Viñales secured his 12th premier class pole position, breaking the previous All Time Lap Record by 0.218s. Valentino Rossi also put in a strong bid for the front row but came just short. He rounds out an all-Yamaha top-4 lockout, the Japanese manufacturer‘s first ever in a MotoGP qualifying session.
Viñales was the first rider to head out on track for the 15-minute shoot-out. His opening lap, a 1‘32.130s, immediately put him at the top of the standings, but the competition was fierce, and the times were dropping fast. However, the Spaniard had a strategy in place.
He rushed back to pit lane with the plan to swap bikes two times during Q2 in order to get in as many laps on fresh tyres as possible. Thanks to this, Top Gun was the only rider out on track already on his second run when the other riders were in pit lane for their stop. This gave him the clear space to set another provisional P1 lap, a 1‘31.787s, but there was still more to come.
The number-12 rider visited pit lane for the second time, with a little over three minutes remaining, to switch bikes again. He had time for just one more try and set an astonishing lap record of 1‘31.411s, earning himself pole position with a 0.312s advantage over second place.
Rossi had topped the FP3 session in the morning and was determined to put in a top result again in Q2. He briefly went pole with his second flying lap, clocking a 1‘31.877s, but was pushed back to second place by 0.086s shortly after, and he returned to the pits for a fresh rear tyre with seven and a half minutes left.
When he re-entered the track, he had time for three more hot laps but wasn‘t able to further improve. Yet the local hero‘s earlier fastest lap was quick enough for him to remain in fourth place, 0.466s from first. The result earned Yamaha its first ever top-4 lockout in a MotoGP qualifying session.
That pole lap by Maverick was unbelievable. He planned on doing three time attacks, swapping bikes twice, and I was a bit worried at first. Sometimes you need a little time getting used to a bike when you jump from one straight onto the other, but he did a great job – very impressive! Valentino has been strong all day too, and he is really in the mix at the front, as are all the Yamahas. We witnessed a bit of history being made today, because this is Yamaha’s first top-4 lockout in a MotoGP qualifying session. After two bad weekends in Austria, here the situation is completely different, and the contrast makes the excitement even bigger. We are looking forward to a good race tomorrow.
I‘m really happy because that lap was amazing! Not just because it gave me pole position, but more so because of the time itself. When I saw 1‘31.4s I thought “This is a good lap time!”. We knew our potential and took everything we had, and we made a really good lap. Honestly, I‘m quite happy and impressed that at the end of the day we were so fast. Breaking the lap record was really hard for me. This morning we were still riding 1‘31.9s. We weren‘t completely sure what we would be able to do in the afternoon, but I felt so good, especially in FP4 on the hard tyre. For tomorrow, we don‘t know what will happen, but today and also on Friday we were strong, so tomorrow we are going to try to be strong again. I will push from the beginning. For sure, the race will be very long and tough, so we‘re going to try to be smart, and then we‘ll see what we can do.
My day was good. This morning was fantastic for me, because to finish FP3 in P1 is always a great feeling in Misano. Also, I had a good pace, and I felt good with the bike. Here at this track the Yamaha is very competitive, very strong. We need to come back at the top, to fight for top positions, because the two weekends in Austria were very difficult to manage. This afternoon we tried some different things. I was not fantastic, and everybody has big doubts about the tyres, both front and rear, because the choice is very open. So, we have to see, we have to fix some things. It‘s a shame about the front row, but starting from the fourth position is still good, and our pace is not so bad. It looks like the Yamahas have a very good pace. The battle will be hard as always, because especially Maverick, but also Quartararo and Franco, have been riding very well since Friday morning, so I think that we will have to start well, have to improve for tomorrow and try to fight for the podium.