MotoGP: Zarco Leads Wet FP2 At Misano (Updated)

MotoGP: Zarco Leads Wet FP2 At Misano (Updated)

© 2021, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc. By David Swarts.

MotoGP FP2



More, from a press release issued by Dorna:

Mack is back! Viñales pips Mir to the top on mixed Day 1 at Misano

Aprilia lead the way in FP1 before rain affects play, with the reigning Champion extremely hot on their heels

Friday, 17 September 2021


Maverick Vinales (12) Photo courtesy Dorna.
Maverick Vinales (12) Photo courtesy Dorna.


Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) made some headlines when he first tested the RS-GP at Misano and on Day 1 at the Gran Premio Octo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini he made a few more. The number 12 was quickest out the blocks in FP1 before the rain came down in the final few minutes, and with conditions remaining damp in FP2 he remains the fastest on Friday. Reigning Champion Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was in close attendance, however, 0.080 off the top as he prepares to make his 100th Grand Prix start on Sunday, with MotorLand winner Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) starting his home GP in third.


Viñales was hovering third in FP1 before the number 12 pulled the pin further and went top, and with only just over 10 minutes left of the opening session, the rain then came down in droves. That put paid to that for the rest, and the Spaniard’s 1:32.666 was enough for him to take the honours, 0.080 clear of Mir and just under a tenth and a half ahead of Bagnaia.

Bagnaia was the first in a Borgo Panigale 3-4 as Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) was less than half a tenth off the number 63, with Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) finding some speed on Friday to complete the top five.

Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team) was sixth and the number 44 was one of a few who headed out after the heavens opened, along with teammate and eight-time World Champion Marc Marquez and the two Suzukis.

Championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) was P7 in FP1, ahead of HRC test rider and wildcard Stefan Bradl, who reportedly has some chassis comparing to do. Marc Marquez was ninth, with Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) completing the top ten.

On his return following knee surgery, Franco Morbidelli put his new Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP machine into P16, only just over half a second off new – and former – teammate Quartararo. Andrea Dovizioso (Petronas Yamaha SRT), meanwhile, eased into it with a best of a 1:35.211 on his return to the grid and to Yamaha.

There were no crashes in the morning.


The afternoon was wet, wet, damp and it was Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) who rose to the fore. The Frenchman topped the timesheets after having taken P11 in FP1, and he had a huge half-second margin in hand over Bagnaia in P2. Miller was his teammate’s shadow once again, the Australian 0.069 in further arrears.

Mir had a solid showing, with laptimes hovering around ten seconds off those set in FP1, and the number 36 slotted it into fourth. Marc Marquez was just 0.011 further behind, and the number 93 had a good three tenths to spare ahead of Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) as the Portuguese rider leapt into the limelight in FP2.

Danilo Petrucci (Tech3 KTM Factory Racing) was next up on the second KTM, 0.095 further back, and the Italian had a bigger gap back to Aleix Espargaro.

Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM Factory Racing) put in a solid session on the timesheets but the Spaniard also suffered a big highside at Turn 1, rider ok but a little bruised. Rookie Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama) was the only other faller, down at Turn 2.

Alex Marquez (LCR Honda Castrol) completed the damp-affected FP2, just pipping Rins.

FP1 is the same as the combined timesheets after the weather came down, so it’s some interesting reading from the so-far slightly limited running. Viñales and Aprilia grab the headlines, and with the venue one where the number 12 holds the all-time lap record, the RS-GP has tested and where Viñales has tested the RS-GP, it will be interesting to see what happens if the sun returns…

Mir’s strong start in both sessions sends a good warning shot as he arrives fresh from the podium, and Bagnaia’s continued pace, on the back of his first win, likewise. The Italian also had some serious speed at Misano last season…

Miller will want to turn the tables on his teammate on Saturday as he’s fourth, with Rins back in the top five after a tougher Aragon GP outside the top ten on race day. Pol Espargaro is top Honda and pipped Quartararo to sixth by just 0.005, although the Championship leader will surely have more in the locker at a venue Yamaha have dominated eight times.

Bradl impressed to pip Marc Marquez, and Aleix Espargaro is the final rider set to move through to Q2 as it stands. For some, there could be a rain dance for FP3 as they look to move through, but with the weather changing quickly it’s anyone’s guess.

Morbidelli and Dovizioso will definitely want dry skies as they settle in, and FP3 will reveal all at 9:55 (GMT +2). Qualifying then start from 14:10, with the grid for a pivotal race in the title fight sure to prove hard-fought.

Lüthi leads Bezzecchi on a rainy day for Moto2™

The Swiss rider heads the timesheets as the intermediate class get the brunt of the weather, with Red Bull KTM Ajo down the order on Day 1


Thomas Luthi (12). Photo courtesy Dorna.
Thomas Luthi (12). Photo courtesy Dorna.

Moto2™ got the wettest deal of the day at the Gran Premio Octo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini, with both sessions affected by rain and Tom Lüthi (Pertamina Mandalika SAG Team) ending the day fastest from his FP1 best. Home hero Marco Bezzecchi (Sky Racing Team VR46) was only 0.028 off though, with Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) completing the top three.

Points leader Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was down in P22 and teammate Raul Fernandez P25 by the end of play…


The morning started with Lüthi on top and he set the time that wouldn’t be deposed, with Bezzecchi starting the day in second too, although a couple of tenths further back. Nicolo Bulega (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) completed the top three on home turf.

Jake Dixon (Petronas Sprinta Racing) fell victim to the conditions, finding himself in the gravel at Turn 4, but he still posted a time good enough for P4 to make for a positive return to the intermediate class. Compatriot while Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) rounded out the top five.

Somkiat Chantra (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) started impressing early in the wet, taking P6.

Augusto Fernandez crashed, rider ok, as did and was Aron Canet (Inde Aspar Team).


The gloomy grey clouds overhead meant the wet track never had chance to dry as the intermediate class rolled out for a second rain-affected session. Bezzecchi set out his stall early, putting in a couple of fast laps to move to within 0.028s of previous P1, while Augusto Fernandez took a similar approach in recording his fastest lap of the day to move into second in the session.

Chantra took third in FP2 before going down in a fast crash at the end, rider ok, with Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) fourth in the afternoon. Lowes was fifth once again.

Bulega found himself riding through the gravel but took sixth, ahead of a good session from Malaysian Hafizh Syahrin (NTS RW Racing GP) and American Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team).

Lüthi leads the way with his FP1 best, with Bezzecchi second in both but his FP2 time putting him within half a tenth of the Swiss rider. Augusto Fernandez takes third, ahead of Chantra, with second, third and fourth all faster in the afternoon.

Bulega stays fifth thanks to his FP1 best, and likewise Dixon in P6. Vierge is seventh ahead of Lowes, with Syahrin and Roberts locking out the top ten.

As it stands it’s Stefano Manzi (Flexbox HP 40), Jorge Navarro (+Ego Speed Up), an impressive day for Barry Baltus (NTW RW Racing GP) and Fabio Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) who are on to move through to Q2, but could it all change again in FP3?

Red Bull KTM Ajo will be hoping so, and we’ll find out on Saturday morning before qualifying decides the grid from 14:10 (GMT +2). Don’t miss it!

Freight train Foggia heads both sessions on Friday

The MotorLand winner keeps his momentum, the Championship leader starts strong and a host of home heroes invade the top five


Dennis Foggia (7). Photo courtesy Dorna.
Dennis Foggia (7). Photo courtesy Dorna.

Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) kept his form rolling on Day 1, the MotorLand winner topping the timesheets on home turf at the Gran Premio Octo di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini in both sessions, ending the day with some time in hand. Championship leader Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was his closest company, however, with veteran Italian Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) completing the top three at a venue he’s ruled before.


The morning was when Foggia made his mark, the Italian heading an all-Italian top three. The Leopard rider had three tenths to spare over compatriots Fenati and Niccolo Antonelli (Avintia VR46 Academy) as well, starting the day off with a statement.

Andrea Migno (Rivacold Snipers Team) made it an Italian top four too, with Foggia’s Aragon sparring partner Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech3) rounding out the top five despite a tumble at Turn 1 that saw him able to re-join. The Turk suffered the only incident of the session.

Championship top two Acosta and Sergio Garcia (Gaviota GASGAS Aspar Team) had a quieter start, with neither able to crack the top 10 as the momentum remained with Foggia.


Foggia kept it rolling to go fastest once again, but this time the gap was much smaller and it was Acosta hot on his heels. 0.013 split the two in FP2. The sun once again shone, but after earlier rain the mixed conditions and wet track meant that only a select few riders could better their morning times. Acosta was a key mover into second.

With only a few minutes remaining, and as riders prepared to get ready for one final flying lap, the rain flags were back out again to put paid to that. But Foggia had already posted a time good enough to take him to the top of the session’s timesheets… just not beating his own best from the morning.

Antonelli did manage to improve his time in the afternoon and was third in the session, ahead of Fenati and Migno.

Darryn Binder (Petronas Sprinta Racing) was the only faller, highsiding but rider ok.

Foggia, Acosta and Fenati head the charge, ahead of Antonelli in fourth. Migno rounds out an experienced, veteran and home hero top five barring the impressive P2 from Acosta.

Also mightily impressive was the rider in sixth: Matteo Bertelle. The Bardahl VR46 Riders Academy wildcard made some headlines of his own to debut in style on Day 1, improving in FP2.

Former Misano winner John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) slots back into Moto3™ in seventh from his FP2 best, with Öncü in P8 as he searches for that elusive first victory. Binder takes ninth, with Filip Salac (CarXpert PruestelGP) completing the top ten.

Currently, it’s Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo), former Misano winner Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) and rookie duo Izan Guevara (GAVIOTA GASGAS Aspar Team) and Xavier Artigas (Leopard Racing) who stand to move straight through to Q2… and with the weather seemingly set to remain unpredictable, anything could happen in FP3 on Saturday morning. Then, Moto3™ head out for qualifying from 12:35 (GMT +2) so tune in!

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