It ultimately proved to be a difficult day for PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s MotoGP riders at Sachsenring, with Valentino Rossi ending GermanGP qualifying in 16th and Franco Morbidelli 18th after a Q1 crash.
Rossi was an unfortunate victim of the narrow margins in FP3 and joined his team-mate in Q1. His quickest lap in the morning session – 1min 20.961secs – was only three tenths shy of the top-ten, but put him 16th. Valentino had a steady start to qualifying, but made small improvements in the closing stages to end Q1 sixth with a best time of 1min 20.972secs. With yellow flags out on his final lap, the Italian was unable to improve further and will line up 16th on the grid.
Morbidelli had a good start to FP3, posting the fourth fastest lap, but was unlucky to miss out on a direct Q2 place by only 0.067secs at the end of the session. His best lap of 1min 20.749secs saw him end the session 12th. The Italian looked set to be in the fight for the Q2 places however, his Q1 session was curtailed by a Turn 13 crash on his final flying lap. Franco ended Q1 eighth – 1min 21.091secs – which will see him start tomorrow’s race from 18th.
Warm Up for Rossi and Morbidelli will get underway at 9.40am local time (3.40pm MYT) tomorrow, with lights out for the 30-lap MotoGP race at 2pm local time (8pm MYT).