Team Suzuki Press Office – September 21.
Joan Mir: 9th – 1:48.458
Alex Rins: 13th – 1:48.449
• Joan Mir takes 9th spot on the grid at favoured circuit.
• Alex Rins narrowly misses out on Q2 spot.
• Team ready to fight for best possible positions.
Saturday morning in Aragon saw damp conditions to start, meaning lap times were far from those of yesterday’s dry FP2.
Team SUZUKI ECSTAR’s riders used this session to get a feel for the mixed conditions, whilst also being cautious of the tricky track conditions. Both Joan Mir and Alex Rins held the top spot at points in FP3, but despite Rins finishing the session on top, it wasn’t enough to graduate him into Q2.
In FP4 Mir suffered a quick crash but escaped uninjured and still showed consistency and pace. Rins used his time to prepare for the forthcoming Q1 session and gauge his race pace.
The predicted rain failed to materialise and qualifying remained dry. Rins headed straight for the top of Q1 on his first run, before opting for the medium-hard tyre combination for his final run. Despite improving his lap time with each pass over the line, he narrowly missed out on making it into Q2, qualifying in 13th place.
For the final Q2 session, Mir continued his impressive form and went into the Top 5 on his first fast laps. The rookie loves the Aragon circuit and has great rhythm around the track, he was pleased to finish qualifying on the 3rd row in 9th place.
Davide Brivio – Team Manager:
“We’re happy with Joan’s progress today, he was able to go to Q2 and then qualify on the 3rd row. He could even have had an even better lap time because his pace was very strong. Things didn’t go so well for Alex, he missed Q2 by a tiny amount, so he’ll start further back on the grid. It’s a pity because Alex has great race pace, enough to stay with the front riders, we hope he can gain as many positions as possible.”
“Today went well. In FP3 I felt strong, even in those mixed and damp conditions. In FP4 I tried the hard front tyre, but I had a crash, so I lost a bit of confidence. It hasn’t been an easy day but I’m happy with my set-up, I feel good with my bike. I’ll try to get into the front group tomorrow, Marquez has a really fast pace but the rest of us are closer together. I’m ready for the fight.”
“I felt strong with hard tyre, I wanted to use for qualifying and I thought it was the right thing to do, but in the end I didn’t improve the lap time enough and I ended up just missing out on Q2. In FP3 and FP4 I felt really good, so I was quite disappointed not to go into final qualifying. But I still feel positive about the race because I feel our bike works well here and I hope to have a good race.”
GP of Aragon – Qualifying Classification:
1. Marc MARQUEZ Repsol Honda Team 1’47.009
2. Fabio QUARTARARO Petronas Yamaha SRT 1’47.336 0.327 / 0.327
3. Maverick VIÑALES Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1’47.472 0.463 / 0.136
4. Jack MILLER Pramac Racing 1’47.658 0.649 / 0.186
5. Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1’47.733 0.724 / 0.075
6. Valentino ROSSI Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1’48.015 1.006 / 0.282
7. Cal CRUTCHLOW LCR Honda CASTROL 1’48.322 1.313 / 0.307
8. Franco MORBIDELLI Petronas Yamaha SRT 1’48.372 1.363 / 0.050
9. Joan MIR Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1’48.458 1.449 / 0.086
10. Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati Team 1’48.608 1.599 / 0.150
11. Andrea IANNONE Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1’49.240 2.231 / 0.632
12. Pol ESPARGARO Red Bull KTM Factory Racing NTS
13. Alex RINS Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1’48.449 Q1
14. Takaaki NAKAGAMI LCR Honda IDEMITSU 1’48.477 Q1
15. Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati Team 1’48.682 Q1
16. Francesco BAGNAIA Pramac Racing 1’48.748 Q1
17. Miguel OLIVEIRA Red Bull KTM Tech 3 KTM 1’48.827 Q1
18. Tito RABAT Reale Avintia Racing 1’48.916 Q1
19. Mika KALLIO Red Bull KTM Factory Racing. 1’49.085 Q1
20. Jorge LORENZO Repsol Honda Team 1’49.282 Q1
21. Hafizh SYAHRIN Red Bull KTM Tech 3 1’49.315 Q1
22. Karel ABRAHAM Reale Avintia Racing 1’49.517 Q1
23. Bradley SMITH Aprilia Racing Team 1’49.756 Q1