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Quartararo Puts in Successful Bid for Q2 on Spielberg Friday

Quartararo Puts in Successful Bid for Q2 on Spielberg Friday

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Fabio Quartararo set the 9th fastest time in today‘s Practice session in Spielberg and secured a place in tomorrow‘s Q2 at the Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich event. Franco Morbidelli finished 17th in the Practice rankings and will have to take part in Q1 tomorrow.

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli were pushing on the Friday to make the best possible start to the Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich race weekend. Quartararo finished in 9th place in the Practice session and succeeded in securing a place in tomorrow‘s Q2. Morbidelli ended in 17th place and will take part in Q1.

Quartararo led the morning Free Practice session for the majority of the 45 minutes and ultimately finished it in second place. The positive start to the Spielberg race weekend gave the Frenchman an extra spring in his step for the 60-minute Practice in the afternoon. With dark clouds looming, he was quick to put in some strong laps, holding seventh place with a 1‘29.899s early on in the session, but it wasn‘t enough to keep him in the top 10. The Frenchman needed to put his head down again in the final stages and improved multiple times. His 1‘29.155s, set on lap 26/30, ultimately earned him ninth place, 0.622s from first. 

Morbidelli had put in solid work in the morning practice session, which he hoped would set him up nicely for the battle for the coveted top 10 in the Practice session. However, the pace in the afternoon was hot right from the get-go, as it remained uncertain whether rain would fall later on. The Italian found himself in 15th place after the first 15 minutes. Despite improving to a 1‘29.832s in the final stages as the time attacks started to roll in, Morbido remained in 15th place. He had one final push on his last run and bettered his time to a 1‘29.621s, clocked on lap 23/24. It put him in 17th position in the Practice classification.

Fabio Quartararo

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP

"I‘m happy with the day because I think that in the end it‘s great to end the day in Q2, and I had a great pace today, so the goal is achieved. Hopefully tomorrow we can make another step forward. The rhythm in the morning and in the afternoon was great. We know that as soon as we put in new tyres, we struggle a bit more. In the afternoon the competition boosted their lap times, but rather than focusing on the position, I focused on my riding, and my riding was great. We have some margin for tomorrow on the time attack, so that‘s great too. I still have to check the data concerning the new aero because today I was a bit rushed - I really wanted to focus on my riding. My feeling is that it‘s an improvement. I‘m really happy about that. It‘s one of the first steps that we have to make."

Franco Morbidelli

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP

"Unfortunately, today we were not able to get directly into Q2. The gap is not big, but it‘s enough to stay out of the top 10. I was trying to do a better performance on my second time attack, but it wasn't enough. We‘ve got to dig deep tomorrow to improve in some areas and see what we can do."

Massimo Meregalli

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP, Team Director

"The objective was to be inside the top 10, as always. We managed to achieve 50% of our goal. Tomorrow in qualifying, we will try to also get the other 50% into Q2. Overall, we are not disappointed about these two first sessions, knowing that we still have some margin for further improvement in tomorrow‘s FP2. From tomorrow on, the weather should be stable and good, and that for sure will help us as we fine-tune the bikes‘ set-up. Today we have identified the tyre we will use for the Sprint and Race, so tomorrow we will just be dotting the i‘s and crossing the t‘s. The lap times are all very close, and this makes it even more tricky, making every detail extra important."