MotoGP Circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya welcomes MotoGP triple-header race

MGP-9-Joan Mir-3

Team Suzuki Press Office – September 25.

Combined practice times:

Joan Mir: 7th – 1’40.441 (+ 0.652)
Alex Rins: 11th – 1’40.538 (+ 0.749)

The Circuit of Barcelona-Catalunya welcomes the MotoGP paddock for the third in a triple-header of races. Team Suzuki Ecstar’s riders enter the weekend feeling confident at their home track and ready to do battle.

Joan Mir comes to the track in Montmelo fresh from two great podiums in Misano and he was quick to get up to pace during FP1 despite a crash at Turn 5. Unhurt and swiftly back on track he placed himself in second place shortly before the end of the session, showing great consistency on lap times, and closed FP1 in third with a 1’41.060. In the afternoon’s FP2 he spent a long time on used tyres, completing a long run to try and gauge the feel. When he switched to a time-attack he was able to place second once again with a 1’40.441 before dropping to sixth at the flag. He completes Day 1 in 7th overall.

Alex Rins is keen to put last week’s troubles behind him at his home GP, and he made moves into the top spots as soon as FP1 began. His best time in the morning was a 1’41.316 and he finished seventh after spending the vast majority of the session sitting in the Top 5. This is something he was able to repeat in FP2 and he set a 1’40.538 to go fifth with three minutes left in the session. But a drop to 10th before the flag came out meant he finished just outside the Top 10 in 11th on combined.

Davide Brivio – Team Manager:

“It’s been a positive day, we worked to find the best set-up in these tricky conditions, as it’s windier and colder than last week. Considering it’s just Day 1 we feel strong because both riders have good pace and good rhythm. Joan is in the Top 10 on combined for tomorrow and Alex only just missed out by a tiny amount. Tomorrow we’ll put everything together and try to put ourselves in strong contention for qualifying.”

Joan Mir:

“Today has been a bit tough for everyone because the track is slippery and it’s really difficult to find the best tyre option, it’s also quite windy. This first day hasn’t really shown who’s on the pace and who’s not. I worked a lot with a used medium rear tyre which gave me some info for the race. I didn’t really try to set fast laps today, but my lap times weren’t bad anyway. Qualifying will be interesting tomorrow.”

Alex Rins:

“Today I got back the good feeling that I didn’t have in Misano. This morning I suffered a bit with the low grip on the track, but in the afternoon I started to really enjoy riding here and I managed a lot of consistent lap times. My aim is to take another step forward tomorrow in terms of one lap pace and then I’ll be hoping to qualify well.”

GRAN PREMI MONSTER ENERGY DE CATALUNYA – Combined Classification after DAY 1:

1. F. MORBIDELLI – Petronas Yamaha SRT – 01:39.789
2. J. ZARCO – Esponsorama Racing – 01:39.898 – +0.109
3. B. BINDER – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing – 01:40.008 – +0.219
4. M. VIÑALES – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP – 01:40.208 – +0.419
5. T. NAKAGAMI – LCR Honda IDEMITSU – 01:40.412 – +0.623
6. F. QUARTARARO – Petronas Yamaha SRT – 01:40.431 – +
7. J. MIR – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – 01:40.441 – +0.652
8. P. ESPARGARO – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing – 01:40.474 – +0.685
9. A. MARQUEZ – Repsol Honda Team – 01:40.478 – +0.689
10. V. ROSSI – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP – 01:40.502 – +0.713
11. A. RINS – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – 01:40.538 – +0.749
12. J. MILLER – Pramac Racing – 01:40.626 – +0.837
13. C. CRUTCHLOW – LCR Honda CASTROL – 01:40.754 – +0.965
14. A. ESPARGARO – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini – 01:40.791 – +1.002
15. A. DOVIZIOSO – Ducati Team – 01:40.861 – +0.430
16. I. LECUONA – Red Bull KTM Tech 3 – 01:40.871 – +1.082
17. M. OLIVEIRA – Red Bull KTM Tech 3 – 01:41.028 – +1.239
18. B. SMITH – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini – 01:41.095 – +1.306
19. S. BRADL – Repsol Honda Team – 01:41.260 – +1.471
20. F. BAGNAIA – Pramac Racing – 01:41.337 – +1.548
21. T. RABAT – Esponsorama Racing – 01:41.673 – +1.884
22. D. PETRUCCI – Ducati Team – 01:42.059 – +1.628

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