Day 1 of free practice for the Portuguese GP, the fifth round of the MotoGP World Championship held this weekend at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve, near Portimão, saw both sessions scheduled today affected by the bad weather.
Despite the challenging conditions of the track, made treacherous by the rain, both Pecco and Jack were immediately in the first positions in the opening minutes of FP1. Still, they eventually closed eighth and ninth as Bagnaia saw his last lap time cancelled due to the yellow flags, and Miller suffered a crash just minutes before the end of the session. In FP2, the rain intensified, accompanied by the strong wind, preventing most riders from improving. In those conditions, also the Italian rider crashed and had to miss a good part of the session.
Bagnaia closes the day with the ninth fastest time overall, while Miller completes the top ten to secure a provisional spot in Q2 tomorrow, which they will have to confirm in tomorrow morning’s FP3, which could still be held in the wet.
Francesco Bagnaia (#63, Ducati Lenovo Team) – 9th (1:51.387)
“Despite the crash this afternoon, today’s result is very positive. Compared to Indonesia, where we raced in the rain, here I found the same sensations as last year: I have a good feeling with the front that allows me to push and ride as I want. In FP2, at the second lap, I was already able to repeat the time of the morning. I had a new medium front tyre that probably needed one more lap to get into temperature. I pushed too hard and made a mistake. Overall I’m happy with the way we’re working, and I think I’m in a good position for a wet qualifying tomorrow”.
Jack Miller (#43, Ducati Lenovo Team) – 10th (1:51.437)
“It’s been a long time since we’ve had a full day of work in the wet, and it definitely wasn’t easy. After the first outing this morning, we made a change on the bike that didn’t take us in the right direction. The feeling was the same as at Mandalika, where I could find speed straight away, but then the lack of rear feeling held me back. In FP2, we were able to take a step forward, and in the final minutes of the session, my feeling improved a lot. Now we just have to continue in this direction to get a good qualifying position tomorrow”.
The Ducati Lenovo Team riders will be back on track tomorrow morning at 9:55 (CEST -1.00) for FP3 while qualifying for the Portuguese GP will take place from 14:10 local time at the end of FP4.