Team Suzuki Press Office – May 29.
Grid positions for Italian GP:
Alex Rins: 8th – 1’45.996
Joan Mir: 9th – 1’46.076
Team Suzuki Ecstar and the MotoGP™ paddock were met with sunny skies at the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello for Saturday’s action.
FP3 went well for the confident duo of Alex Rins and Joan Mir who were both able to set several decent lap times and keep themselves firmly inside the Top 10, ensuring direct passage to Q2, which was the first goal of the day. They finished sixth and eighth in the session where the Top 10 were covered by less than half a second.
With the riders’ GSX-RRs feeling good and the setups working well, the afternoon’s FP4 meant an opportunity to check the different tyre options and do short race simulations. Once again, Rins and Mir showed their pace by closing practice in fourth and eighth.
During Q2 both Alex and Joan achieved good times on their first flying laps, but on their second exits they failed to capture quite the same pace. However, the pair will start on the third row for tomorrow’s 23 lap race, with Rins eighth and Mir ninth.
Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager:
“Our riders did a very good job in FP3 and they managed to go straight to Q2, which is always the aim. In FP4 they showed strong race pace, but when it came to qualifying they just missed out on the first two rows by a few tenths. Alex had a small technical failure during Q2 and his bike stopped at the end of the session. We’re still investigating what happened but we’re sorry for Alex because he was doing a great job. However, the third row is not bad and we know both riders will give their all, we’ll try to prepare the bikes very well and we have confidence that we can have a good race.”
“I’ve been feeling strong with the bike all weekend, so I hoped I might be higher up the grid, but anyway I think it’s OK starting from 8th. The FP3 and FP4 sessions were really good but qualifying was harder. My target tomorrow will be to get a good start and get involved in the front pack. I think my one lap pace is good, and so is my race pace, but there are a lot of strong riders out there and I think it could be a very intense race. We might lose out a bit on the straight, but around the corners we will be strong.”
“I gave 100% today and overall my pace was good, so I feel quite positive. We tried something different with the settings in FP4 and it didn’t make as much of a difference as I’d hoped, so we still have margin to improve. But the third row and 9th isn’t a bad position to start tomorrow’s GP, and I was glad to get direct passage to Q2. For sure it will be a great fight here at Mugello and I will give my best, so let’s see where we are when the chequered flag comes out.”
GRAN PREMIO D’ITALIA OAKLEY – Qualifying Classification:
1 Fabio QUARTARARO Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1’45.187
2 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati Lenovo Team 1’45.417 0.230 / 0.230
3 Johann ZARCO Pramac Racing 1’45.432 0.245 / 0.015
4 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1’45.538 0.351 / 0.106
5 Jack MILLER Ducati Lenovo Team 1’45.598 0.411 / 0.060
6 Brad BINDER Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 1’45.743 0.556 / 0.145
7 Miguel OLIVEIRA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 1’45.745 0.558 / 0.002
8 Alex RINS Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1’45.996 0.809 / 0.251
9 Joan MIR Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1’46.076 0.889 / 0.080
10 Franco MORBIDELLI Petronas Yamaha SRT 1’46.084 0.897 / 0.008
11 Marc MARQUEZ Repsol Honda Team 1’46.125 0.938 / 0.041
12 Pol ESPARGARO Repsol Honda Team 1’46.393 1.206 / 0.268
13 Maverick VIÑALES Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP 1’46.045 Q1
14 Enea BASTIANINI Avintia Esponsorama 1’46.129 Q1
15 Takaaki NAKAGAMI LCR Honda IDEMITSU 1’46.195 Q1
16 Michele PIRRO Pramac Racing 1’46.302 Q1
17 Luca MARINI SKY VR46 Avintia 1’46.481 Q1
18 Danilo PETRUCCI Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing 1’46.548 Q1
19 Valentino ROSSI Petronas Yamaha SRT 1’46.770 Q1
20 Iker LECUONA Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing 1’47.084 Q1
21 Lorenzo SAVADORI Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1’47.146 Q1
22 Alex MARQUEZ LCR Honda CASTROL 1’47.216 Q1