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Disrupted Austrian GP Opening Day For Morbidelli And Quartararo

Disrupted Austrian GP Opening Day For Morbidelli And Quartararo

PETRONAS Yamaha SRT’s Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo finish day fifth and tenth after rain hampers afternoon running

It was a day of two halves for Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo, as the two MotoGP Free Practices took place in very different conditions. The afternoon saw the riders stay in the garage for the majority of FP2 due a deluge of rainfall at the Austrian circuit. The times in the dry morning session saw Morbidelli end the day fifth, with team-mate Fabio tenth.
The MotoGP FP1 session at Red Bull Ring – Spielberg took place under grey skies, with the occasional burst of sun, and saw track temperatures slightly lower than those experienced last weekend at Brno. Quartararo and Morbidelli spent the early part of the session exploring where the limits were aboard their Yamaha YZR-M1 machines; both riders had lap times removed and Fabio made a trip across the Turn 4 gravel trap. However, in the closing stages when the field entered into a mini-qualifying session, both riders were able to finish within the top-ten. Franco’s best time of 1min 24.588secs saw him end the session fifth, while Fabio’s 1min 24.753secs lap placed him tenth.
The afternoon session started with a very quiet circuit, as riders opted to stay in the garage knowing that improvements on the morning’s time could not be made in the wet. As the session started to draw to a close both Morbidelli and Quartararo went out to get a handful of laps in on a circuit that had started to dry. However, times did not improve; Franco’s best time in FP2 was a 1min 29.597secs and placed him 13th, while Fabio’s 1min 29.264secs lap saw him end the session just ahead in 12th. In the combined practice times the pair’s best laps from the morning saw them finish fifth and tenth respectively.
The MotoGP FP3 session will get underway tomorrow at 9.55am local time (3.55pm MYT) ahead of the afternoon’s two qualifying sessions, the first of which will begin at 2.10pm local time (8.10pm MYT).

Franco Morbidelli

It was a good Friday for us. We didn’t ride as many laps as we wanted to because of the tricky conditions on track this afternoon. This morning I struggled a little in the beginning with the medium tyre; I found it difficult to get the pace, but then it started getting better and better. Then when we put the soft tyre on the gap to the front was smaller and we could finish fifth, which I’m happy about. Hopefully the weather tomorrow will be a bit kinder to us and we’ll try to do a good job then as well.

Fabio Quartararo

We struggled a little bit in FP1 but looking back after FP2 it seems like we have found some good things for tomorrow and for our race pace in general. We had some ideas after Brno and they seem to work. One lap pace is important but race pace is even more so, that’s why we are focusing so much on that. I’m hoping FP3 and qualifying are dry, because we think we have a good setting for dry conditions. Let’s see what tomorrow is like but I’m really looking forward to it because I think it’s going to be good and that we can do well.