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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Excellent front row for Quartararo at Italian GP

PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team had an excellent Saturday at the Italian GP, with Fabio Quartararo setting the second fastest time in Q2, for a front-row start tomorrow, whilst team-mate Franco Morbidelli claimed fourth for his first home Grand Prix for the team.

Both riders set times in the 1min 45secs, which had not been achieved until this season. A stellar time of 1min 45.733secs allowed Quartararo to reach the front row of the grid for the second time in his short MotoGP career. The young Frenchman showed incredible speed in his two runs during Q2 and was only ousted from pole at the last moment. He was the best placed rookie and independent team rider in the class on Saturday.

It was also a great day for Morbidelli, who shone in front of the Italian fans at Mugello. The PETRONAS Yamaha SRT rider broke the 1min 46secs barrier on his last run with a 1min 45.959secs lap, just 78 thousandths of a second off the front row.

In the morning’s FP3 session, Quartararo improved his time from Friday and sealed his place in Q2, finishing sixth with a time of 1min 46.488secs. Morbidelli took ninth thanks to his 1min 46.518secs lap, allowing him to bypass Q1.

Quartararo was fastest in FP4 – with a 1min 46.799secs time – and Morbidelli was tenth with his 1min 47.457secs lap.

The 23-lap MotoGP Italian Grand Prix – the sixth round of the 2019 season – will get underway at 2pm local time tomorrow.

Franco Morbidelli
PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team

“I’m very happy with our performance today; I didn’t expect to be that fast. I had a good feeling in FP4, although not so much in our first time attack in Q2. I felt better in the second run and I was able to set a 1:45.9, which is a good time at this circuit. It’s a good starting position for tomorrow. Tyre management will be very difficult in the race. We have to study the choice of compounds well tonight and we must take care of the tyres very well during the race. I’m eager to race in front of the Italian fans and give them a good result.”

Fabio Quartararo
PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team

“It was an incredible qualifying session! When I set a 1:45, I thought it was a very fast lap, but then I was able to repeat it. On my last lap I tried everything but I made some small mistakes. Nevertheless, we managed to finish on the front row. We feel really good with the bike, I’m very happy and our race pace is great. Tyre choice will be critical tomorrow. I love this circuit and I enjoy it a lot on a MotoGP bike. The bike corners very well and I feel very strong. I can’t wait.”

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