Franco Morbidelli will be lining up on the fourth row of the grid at Losail International Circuit, after ending today’s qualifying session in tenth. It was a difficult day for fellow PETRONAS Yamaha SRT team-mate Valentino Rossi, who will start the Grand Prix of Doha from 21st on the grid.
FP3 proved to be an inconsequential session for Morbidelli, with the wind and dust preventing any improvements. Franco ended FP3 sixth with a 1min 56.660secs lap, but his time from FP2 saw him head directly to Q2. In FP4 the Italian demonstrated a strong race pace, ending the final session in fifth. Franco also started the qualifying session with a good lap – 1min 53.794secs – that placed him on the front row. Unfortunately he was unable to improve upon this time and will line up on the fourth row of the grid tomorrow in tenth.
Rossi knew it would be a near impossible task to make it into Q2, after ending FP2 outside of the top-ten places. Despite the conditions he had a positive FP3 session, posting a 1min 56.718secs lap and claiming ninth. Unfortunately the Italian was plagued by rear grip issues in qualifying, which hampered his efforts to make it through to Q2. Valentino will be starting tomorrow’s MotoGP race from 21st on the grid, after setting a 1min 54.881secs lap.
Tomorrow’s track action will commence with Warm Up at 3.40pm local time (8.40pm MYT) for Morbidelli and Rossi, before the DohaGP culminates in the 22-lap MotoGP race at 8pm local time (1am MYT).