Maverick Vinales

MotoGP: Vinales takes pole at Valencia

Maverick Vinales has taken pole position for the Valencia GP, setting a new all-time lap record ahead of title favorite Francesco Bagnaia.

The title pendulum has swung back towards the red corner as Francesco Bagnaia comes through Q1 to claim a crucial P2 in Q2 at the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana, as Jorge Martin gets set to launch from the outside of Row 2 in P6.

Meanwhile, Maverick Vinales will be on pole after claiming his first Saturday P1 for the Noale factory, with Johann Zarco completing the top three.

Now, a tense and potentially title-deciding Tissot Sprint awaits.

Qualifying 1

You could cut the tension with a knife as the bikes left the pitlane ahead of Qualifying 1. All eyes were on the factory Ducati of Francesco Bagnaia who desperately needed to stamp his authority and bag himself a place in Q2 for a chance of putting himself in contention for a solid result ahead of his first match point in the Tissot Sprint.

The Champion came out of the blocks fired up as he nailed every apex on his first out lap of the session. The Italian cracked on and proceeded to put the hammer down with full focus on topping the pile. Alex Marquez was enough of a distance behind to use the Italian as a marker up ahead of him. Marquez went top after the first run of laps as Bagnaia came back into the pitlane just 0.015s behind the Spaniard and 0.022s faster than Augusto Fernandez.

Bagnaia moved the goalposts on the first lap of his 2nd run as they neared closer to breaking the 1:29 barrier. The Italian equalled the fastest time from Friday practice but was going even faster his next lap as he proceeded to set the fastest lap of the weekend, and a provisional all-time-lap record to consolidate himself a place in Q2. No one could beat the 1:29.054 set by the number 1 as Alex Marquez joined the Italian in the top two.

Now or never in Q2

The final Q2 session of the year got underway and it was of the most tense and crucial sessions in the title fight. Martin left pitlane with both Marc Marquez and Bagnaia slotting in behind him. Baganaia left plenty of space between himself and the Spaniard but made sure the number 89 was where he could keep an eye on him.

The first laps came in but served as a warm-up for the riders with the fireworks yet to follow. The first fast laps came from Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), Martin and Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) who all put down low 1:29s to lock out the top three.

Maverick Vinales
Maverick Vinales

Bagnaia pitted early with the rest of the field still pushing on. As the other riders came into the pitlane Bagnaia went out on circuit in hopes of finding clear track ahead of him with the rest of the field in the pitlane. Martin then left pitlane with the rest of the grid following, the Spaniard had Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) glued to his rear wheel as he left pitlane.

Meanwhile, Bagnaia had the hammer down and was just 0.010s off halfway around the lap. The Italian was then up on Binder’s top time through sector three as he moved the goalposts by 0.004s. Whilst the number 1 was unable to match his Q1 flyer, he still had time to push further. Right on queue his next lap came in and it was job done for Pecco as he replied with the fastest-ever lap of the circuit so far.

It wasn’t over yet though as red sectors came flying in from Martin and Marquez. Whilst Martin was struggling to get the bike turned with the hard front tire in, he held up Marquez who improved but only managed P8 before hitting the deck at Turn 1 on the next lap.

Then came Maverick ViƱales (Aprilia Racing) who snatched the top spot whilst completely under the radar. The Spaniard took pole position with the first-ever 1:28 lap of the Circuit Ricardo Tormo as he topped the session ahead of Bagnaia and Johann Zarco

Valencia Qualifying Results

1 Maverick Vinales SPA Aprilia Racing (RS-GP23) 1’28.931s
2 Francesco Bagnaia ITA Ducati Lenovo (GP23) +0.092s
3 Johann Zarco FRA Pramac Ducati (GP23) +0.213s
4 Jack Miller AUS Red Bull KTM (RC16) +0.230s
5 Brad Binder RSA Red Bull KTM (RC16) +0.240s
6 Jorge Martin SPA Pramac Ducati (GP23) +0.251s
7 Marco Bezzecchi ITA Mooney VR46 Ducati (GP22) +0.292s
8 Alex Marquez SPA Gresini Ducati (GP22) +0.330s
9 Marc Marquez SPA Repsol Honda (RC213V) +0.344s
10 Raul Fernandez SPA RNF Aprilia (RS-GP22) +0.507s
11 Fabio Di Giannantonio ITA Gresini Ducati (GP22) +0.579s
12 Aleix Espargaro SPA Aprilia Racing (RS-GP23) +0.866s
Qualifying 1 Cutoff
13 Augusto Fernandez SPA Tech3 GASGAS (RC16)* 1’29.233s
14 Enea Bastianini ITA Ducati Lenovo (GP23) 1’29.389s
15 Fabio Quartararo FRA Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1) 1’29.613s
16 Takaaki Nakagami JPN LCR Honda (RC213V) 1’29.864s
17 Luca Marini ITA Mooney VR46 Ducati (GP22) 1’29.901s
18 Pol Espargaro SPA Tech3 GASGAS (RC16) 1’29.953s
19 Franco Morbidelli ITA Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1) 1’30.045s
20 Alex Rins SPA LCR Honda (RC213V) 1’30.257s
21 Lorenzo Savadori ITA RNF Aprilia (RS-GP22) 1’31.044s

* Rookie.

Social Media Auto Publish Powered By :