Saturday in Portugal started nearly the way Friday has ended; with rain showers and cold temperatures. While the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve was still completely wet for Free Practice three this morning, the tarmac started to dry slightly during the FP4 session after lunch time. For Qualifying one the conditions have been mixed and therefore delivered a lot of tension and excitement.
With more standing water on track and also rain coming back during FP3 this morning, WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team’s Andrea Dovizioso was unable to improve on his fastest time from FP2 on Friday afternoon. He concluded the practice sessions in P17 overall.
For Qualifying, the sun came out at the Algarve, yet the track was still too wet for the Italian to switch to slicks, so he tried to get the best out of his rain tyres. Dovizioso pushed hard and was on top momentarily with less than three minutes to go, but couldn’t take profit from a second last lap as the yellow flags came out due to a crash of a contender. He ended up in P6 and will have to start the fifth round of the 2022 MotoGP World Championship season tomorrow from row six on the grid.
On the other side of the WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team garage, MotoGP rookie Darryn Binder had a tough time to keep re-learning the Portuguese circuit aboard the big bike. He learned his lesson with a small fall in FP3, but at the same time already managed to improve his lap time and his feeling.
In the tricky Qualifying one, the South African stayed out with his rain tyres as well and did his personal fastest lap of the weekend with a 1:51.639, nearly three seconds faster than his best time yesterday. He will launch the race tomorrow at 13:00 local time (14:00 CET) from P22, which is his best starting position to date in his first year in the premier class.