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Narrow Margins at Circuit Ricardo Tormo for PETRONAS Yamaha SRT

Narrow Margins at Circuit Ricardo Tormo for PETRONAS Yamaha SRT

Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo eighth and 16th respectively in Valencia GP opening day.

PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s Franco Morbidelli and Fabio Quartararo completed the first day of the 13th round at Circuit Ricardo Tormo, as they prepare for the second race in a row at the Spanish track. Morbidelli ended the opening day of the Gran Premio de la Comunitat Valenciana eighth, with team-mate Quartararo 16th.

Enjoying the near perfect track conditions, Morbidelli started FP1 with a lap that placed him at the top of the timings. At the end of the session, Franco held the second fastest time of 1min 30.944 – 0.115secs shy of the top. FP2 proved to be another tight session, which saw Franco immediately at the top of the timesheets. The Italian, who focused on race pace, did not improve upon his time from the morning, setting a 1min 31.125secs lap, and ended the day eighth.

The opening 15 minutes of FP1 saw Quartararo hold steady inside the top-ten, where riders were only separated by the smallest of margins. At the end of the session, the Frenchman’s 1min 31.617secs lap placed him 16th. Working through a variety of set-up options, Fabio spent the majority of FP2 finding the best feeling. His fastest lap of 1min 31.326secs, which was only 0.704secs off the top, placed him 16th in the session and overall.

FP3 for Franco and Fabio will kick off at 10.55am local time (5.55pm MYT) tomorrow, before qualifying gets underway at 2.50pm local time (9.50pm MYT).

Franco Morbidelli

"It was a positive day for us: I was quite fast this morning and this afternoon. We tested different set-ups of the bike and we felt comfortable and fast with both. To get into the top-ten without doing any time attack laps is a really good thing. I think we have started this weekend with a good mojo and I hope that we will continue like this. Our aim tomorrow will be to start on the front two rows, then attack from the very beginning of the race on Sunday and settle into a good rhythm."

Fabio Quartararo

"Today we have tried lots of things with the bike, but it has been difficult because the feeling has been similar with each change. This means we will have to try something different in FP3 tomorrow, because we have not made the progress that we wanted to today and we need to do it. It has been a tough day but we never give up. We will know more about what the plan is after FP3, once we have tried some things and once we’ve tried to make a time attack. As I said though, we never give up and we will give our all tomorrow and on race day."