Injured Bezzecchi breaks Misano lap record as A. Espargaro misses top 10

Both the Italian and Viñales dipped into the 1:30s in Practice as Pedrosa, Marc Marquez and Bagnaia make it into the all-important top 10

Despite walking wounded at his home Grand Prix following the Catalan GP Turn 1 incident, Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) set a new Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli all-time lap record to place himself 0.126s clear of Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing) in Practice at the Gran Premio Red Bull di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini. The ever-impressive Dani Pedrosa (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) completes the Friday top three as the MotoGP™ Legend rolls back the years in his second wildcard appearance of the season.

Records tumble in Misano

Until there were just over 20 minutes to go, Pedrosa was leading the way before Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing) took over at the summit. The benchmark was a 1:31.416 as the riders began to turn up the wick in their pursuit of automatic Q2 promotion.

An injured Bezzecchi then pounced to P1 with just over 10 minutes left on the clock, his advantage over Martin was a slender 0.028s, as rapid times were now starting to be slammed in. Example A: Viñales’ new all-time lap record – a scintillating 1:30.972, the very first 1:30 lap around Misano in MotoGP™.

Pedrosa climbed back up to second on his penultimate lap and in the Little Samurai’s shadow was an old foe – Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team). The eight-time World Champion went P3 as Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) crashed at Turn 15, bringing out the yellow flags. That proved crucial for Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) whose lap – that was good enough for P6 – was cancelled, but the World Champion responded brilliantly to propel himself back into the top 10.

Bezzecchi landed a late barnstormer to eventually claim P1 as Catalan GP winner Aleix Espargaro slipped outside the top 10 to P12 as riders improved their previous best efforts. A Turn 15 crash for Pol Espargaro (GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3) cost the younger Espargaro sibling a top 10 too, as the automatic Q2 qualifiers were set in Misano. 

The top 10 ahead of qualifying

Martin and Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) will head into Saturday inside the top five, with Marc Marquez and Bagnaia P6 and P7 respectively. P8 went the way of Alex Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP™), as Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and Raul Fernandez (CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP™ Team) seal P9 and P10 – the latter gaining Q2 entry for the first time in his MotoGP™ career despite a small crash in Practice.

A stacked Q1 and intriguing qualifying awaits

Aleix Espargaro, Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP™), Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), Johann Zarco (Prima Pramac Racing)… the list goes on. Q1 is set to be a belter, as is Q2.

Tune into MotoGP™ qualifying at 10:50 local time (GMT+2) on Saturday morning before the Tissot Sprint awaits at 15:00.

Top 10: 

1 Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team)  1:30.846
2 Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing)  + 0.126
3 Dani Pedrosa (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing)  + 0.255
4 Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing)  + 0.331
5 Luca Marini (Mooney VR46 Racing Team)  + 0.341
6 Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team)  + 0.371
7 Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) + 0.374
8 Alex Marquez (Gresini Racing MotoGP™)  + 0.401
9 Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing)  + 0.410
10 Raul Fernandez (CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP™ Team) + 0.690


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