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MotoGP, Qatar Test - Ducati 1-2 with Bagnaia and Bastianini, Espargarò 3rd, Marquez 4th

Pecco demolishes the circuit record, Marc has his first crash with the Desmosedici. Aprilia also at the top with Fernandez and Vinales, 5th and 6th. Yamaha and Honda are struggling, very far from the leaders

MotoGP: Qatar Test - Ducati 1-2 with Bagnaia and Bastianini, Espargarò 3rd, Marquez 4th

Pecco Bagnaia didn't need to demonstrate that the number 1 on his fairing isn't there by chance but, for anyone who still had doubts, he dispelled them in the winter tests. Best time in Sepang and the same in Qatar, taking away the satisfaction of demolishing the circuit record by 8 tenths. No one else dropped below 1'51", Bagnaia did so, setting the benchmark in the tests at 1'50"952. Only teammate Enea Bastianini tried to keep up with him, stopping 0.120 behind Pecco and giving the official Ducati team a 1-2.

Aprilia tried to stay in the wake of the Rosse and with Espargarò placed in 3rd place, but with a gap that already exceeded 3 tenths. Slightly more than Marc Marquez (0.383) who seems to have understood how to get the best out of the Desmosedici on the flying lap. Thanks to the 4th time, his was the first GP23 in the standings and he also took the satisfaction of finishing ahead of Martin who was not as explosive as usual in the flying lap and only 7th. Marc, with 20 minutes left of the day, also picked up his first crash on a Ducati.

A nice surprise was Raul Fernandez's 5th time on the 2023 Aprilia. The Trackhouse team rider, still recovering from his injury in Sepang, also managed to stay ahead of Vinales. After the aforementioned Martin, with 8th quickest time was Fabio Di Giannantonio, winner of the last GP in Qatar. Brad Binder instead kept the KTM flag high, placing it 9th ahead of Marco Bezzecchi: in total there are 6 Ducatis in the top 10 positions.

The first rider outside the Top 10 is Jack Miller, who however can console himself for the fact that he was the last to lap under the track record. Oliveira, on the other hand, set the 12th fastest time, ahead of Alex Marquez, the last of the Ducati riders.

Fabio Quartararo cannot be satisfied, not so much for the 13th time, but for the abundant one second gap from Bagnaia. The Frenchman ended the day ahead of rookie Pedro Acosta (more convincing on pace than on the flying lap) and teammate Alex Rins. Neither does Honda have much to smile about: like yesterday, Zarco was the fastest, but the gap is a big one (1"210). Behind Johann are Nakagami, Mir (struck by the flu) and Marini, a sign of the RC213V's limits. Twenty-first was Augusto Fernandez, but last of the regular riders, because behind him there were only the testers Crutchlow, Pirro and Savadori.


 

 


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