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Home GP Pole Position for Quartararo

Home GP Pole Position for Quartararo

Fabio Quartararo to start French GP from pole; Franco Morbidelli 11th.

PETRONAS Yamaha SRT’s Fabio Quartararo will start his home GP at Le Mans from first place on the grid, after taking his first pole position since the Andalucia GP. Team-mate Morbidelli will start the Grand Prix de France from 11th.

Quartararo was the man to beat in the sunny FP3 session, setting fastest lap after fastest lap. He ended the session on top with a 1min 32.319secs lap time, securing a Q2 spot. The Frenchman showed his strength in qualifying, staying in provisional pole for the majority of Q2. Although his time was beaten in the final moments of the session, the home-hero set a blisteringly quick final lap – 1min 31.315secs – to take his third pole of 2020.

Morbidelli also joined his team-mate in Q2, after setting the third fastest time in FP3 – 1min 32.476secs. The Italian started the second qualifying session strongly, joining Fabio at the top of the standings in the opening minutes. As the times tumbled in the closing stages, the margins separating the riders also closed. Although Franco was only 0.576secs shy of pole, with a 1min 31.891secs lap, he ended qualifying 11th.

Fabio and Franco will be back on track tomorrow at 9.30am local time (3.30pm MYT) for their Warm Up session, with the 27-lap MotoGP race due to get underway slightly earlier than usual: 1pm local time (7pm MYT).

Fabio Quartararo

"It feels great to be back in pole position, and even more so to do it in France. I feel great on the bike and qualifying was great as well; the first run was really good. At that point I knew I really wanted pole position today. It’s my second pole position at Le Mans, so I am really happy. The focus now is on the first laps of the race, we want to stay ahead of the others and then see what the pace is like. If we do this, I think we can have a really good race. The team has done a really fantastic job with the bike and we will see what we can do tomorrow."

Franco Morbidelli

"It was a strange qualifying today and I’m a little disappointed. I felt great all day, I was fast in Free Practice and I had a lot of confidence on the bike. In qualifying I felt good in the first time attack, I made a decent lap time and I was third. I was aiming for something good, but in the second time attack I didn’t have the same feeling with the new rear tyre. I couldn’t attack like I wanted to and also I didn’t improve my lap time. 11th is not what I was expecting, it’s not what I wanted, but we will try to have a good race tomorrow. Our pace is really strong, so we will try to move through the pack as much as we can, although overtaking will be difficult, and see where we are at the chequered flag."