Bagnaia brilliant at home!
Can anyone stop the Ducati's?
Once again, it was all about Ducati on a Saturday, as the factory team secured a 1-2 again. Even more impressive, is that Pecco was 3 tenths clear of the field, and looked unstoppable all weekend. If he can get a solid start, and have Miller as a wingman behind, he has every chance of getting his 2nd win in MotoGP. It will be interesting to see how much of a team player Jack is, considering his all-out nature of riding. Martin and Zarco helped to almost lock out the front of the grid, as they both try and have smoother weekends than last time. Bastiannini did an excellent lap to book his way through to Q2, and if he had done the same lap time in Q2, he would have been 7th or so, but sadly he couldn’t, partially as a result of yellow flags.
Quartararo just didn’t have the pace to match the Ducati’s, as it seems when he tried to push even more, he went over the edge, costing himself anymore chances of pole. From where he is in the title though, he can afford to be 3rd, which is pretty good anyway. Only time will tell if he can keep up with Bagnaia in the race. Fair play to Morbidelli, who in his 1st race back for quite a while, and on a brand new bike for him, was right in the hunt for Q2. Sadly, he didn’t quite do it, however the signs are good for the future of the factory team. SRT will be on the last row of the grid, which isn’t bad for Dovizioso, yet Rossi will be disappointed, as he crashed twice today, not enjoying the bike it seems.
Considering Marquez said it would be a tough weekend for them, getting on the 2nd and 3rd row is probably better than they expected. Marc was pushing the envelope whenever he could, trying to stay with Bagnaia, and it cost him, as he went down in the closing stages of Q2. If he is not careful, with the amount of crashing he does, he could face another year out very soon! Pol actually did superbly, to beat Marquez’s time, who looked to be on the limit of the bike anyway. Just like at Aragon, will they do better over a race distance, than over one lap? Nakagami was the first rider not into Q2, whereas Alex continues his struggles with the 2021 Honda.
All of the worries about Vinales’ move have been dispelled, at least for the moment, as he qualified 10th, not far behind his teammate. Let’s see if they can both move forwards in the race, despite their lack of power. My guess would be that they can challenge the Honda’s, and maybe the Pramac riders too.
Yet again, Suzuki will find themselves starting back on the 3rd and 4th rows of the grid, where it will be hard to make any impression on the podium. Looking at Mir especially, with his main title rivals on the front row, the best he can probably hope for is a top 5. The team may actually be hoping for rain to spice up the show a bit, and give them a chance to make something of the race.
For the best KTM to be 17th, is pretty diabolical. Even from there, it could be hard for Binder to charge through the field that far. Lecuona, we know will be praying for rain, although I am not sure about his teammates, who didn’t look great in the wet either.
The clouds were ominous during Q2, but they held back, maybe saving all the drama for Sunday, where we could get a thrilling race, whether it is wet or dry!
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