Gutsy performance in Friday’s free practice for San Marino and Riviera di Rimini GP

Bagnaia clinches a place in Q2 with seventh quickest time in free practice for the San Marino and Riviera di Rimini GP at Misano

Francesco Bagnaia produced a gutsy performance in Friday’s free practice for the San Marino and Riviera di Rimini GP at the Misano World Circuit to clinch a place in the top-10, which puts him through directly into tomorrow’s crucial Q2 qualifying session.

Just five days after his bad highside at the start of the Catalan GP, in which he was lucky to only suffer contusions, the Ducati Lenovo Team man was back on his Desmosedici GP23 today, ready to tackle the two practice runs around the 4.226 km circuit.

After verifying his physical condition in the morning’s first session, in which he took no excessive risks, Pecco was soon back on the pace of the leaders in the afternoon, setting top-5 times on numerous occasions.

The rider from Chivasso ended the day in an overall P7, and with a time of 1’31.220 which was only three-tenths off the pace of today’s frontrunner, Marco Bezzecchi (VR46 Racing Ducati), who set a new outright record of 1:30.846 for the Misano circuit.

Francesco Bagnaia (#1 Ducati Lenovo Team) – 7th (1:31.220)
“Honestly, I’m so happy, when I arrived at the box after what I had been through, it was one of the best moments of the season for me. Today wasn’t easy. I’m struggling a lot to move my leg on the bike, and I had to change a bit my riding style in the right corners. This morning it was already a good test for me, and this afternoon we did a better step in front in terms of feeling on the bike. The lap times we were doing with the used tyres were good, the pace was incredible, and the time attack went well. It will be tough for sure, but I don’t want to think too much about the races, I just want to stay calm and enjoy the moment.”

The Ducati Lenovo Team will be out on track again in its home GP on Saturday for the second free practice session at 10.10 CEST, while Q1 and Q2 follow shortly after at 10.50. The afternoon’s 13-lap Sprint is scheduled to get underway at 15.00.

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