Rookies Bagnaia and Quartararo quickest on Friday at Mugello

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Not many would have predicted a Francesco Bagnaia and Fabio Quartararo top two at the end of the first two Free Practice sessions at the Italian Grand Peix, but that’s exactly what happened at Mugello.

The Italian and Frenchman making it the first time in over 11 years that two rookies have ended a MotoGP day quickest, Jorge Lorenzo and James Toseland the duo to last do it in Qatar 2008 qualifying.

Before the rookies came to the fore, it was Championship and Italian GP FP1 leader Marc Marquez who was sat at the top of the times for most of FP2. Every rider apart from LCR Honda Idemitsu’s Takaaki Nakagami and Aleix Espargaro had improved on their FP1 times with just under 20 minutes to go but as is accustomed in MotoGP FP2, most of the action came in the final ten minutes.

Aforementioned, Marquez sat at the top of the tree and it was a quintet of Ducatis who were his closest challengers, before Yamaha MotoGP’s Maverick Viñales jumped into the top four. Fellow Yamaha rider Quartararo then went to P3 as the timing screens lit up with personal best and session best times. Danilo Petrucci then went P1 before Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pol Espargaro stuck in the first 1:46 of the weekend.

Petrucci and Quartararo then exchanged fastest session times before an Italian was on the march, Bagnaia launching himself to the summit with seconds to go to take top spot honours on Friday ahead of Quartararo and Petrucci, with Pol Espargaro claiming a fantastic fourth. Bagnaia improving drastically from a P17 in FP1 to delight the home crowd, with Quartararo, Petrucci and Espargaro cementing top ten places.

A solid FP2 sees Viñales take P5 and a provisional automatic Q2 place, the Spaniard struggling to 14th in FP1, with Friday morning pacesetter Marquez ending the day sixth. Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Alex Rins earns a top ten place in FP2 after sitting 11th after FP1, with LCR Honda Castrol’s Cal Crutchlow sitting eighth – 0.438 splitting him from Bagnaia.

There was a late crash for Pramac Racing’s Jack Miller in FP2, the Australian finished 9th in the second session to drop from 6th as he heads tenth place Franco Morbidelli.

Johann Zarco crashed at Turn 11 midway through FP2 – rider ok.

The top 18 are split by less than a second and with the likes of Andrea Dovizioso, Valentino Rossi and Repsol Honda Team’s Jorge Lorenzo – among others – outside the provisional Q2 places, FP3 looks set to be a cracker.

Full FP2 Relults:

Pos. Rider Bike Time Gap 1st/Prev.
1 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 1'46.732  
2 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 1'46.778 0.046 / 0.046
3 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 1'46.863 0.131 / 0.085
4 Pol ESPARGARO KTM 1'46.966 0.234 / 0.103
5 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 1'46.973 0.241 / 0.007
6 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 1'47.062 0.330 / 0.089
7 Alex RINS Suzuki 1'47.167 0.435 / 0.105
8 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 1'47.170 0.438 / 0.003
9 Jack MILLER Ducati 1'47.185 0.453 / 0.015
10 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 1'47.268 0.536 / 0.083
11 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 1'47.347 0.615 / 0.079
12 Johann ZARCO KTM 1'47.419 0.687 / 0.072
13 Michele PIRRO Ducati 1'47.421 0.689 / 0.002
14 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 1'47.483 0.751 / 0.062
15 Joan MIR Suzuki 1'47.579 0.847 / 0.096
16 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 1'47.612 0.880 / 0.033
17 Tito RABAT Ducati 1'47.686 0.954 / 0.074
18 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 1'47.726 0.994 / 0.040
19 Andrea IANNONE Aprilia 1'47.887 1.155 / 0.161
20 Jorge LORENZO Honda 1'48.114 1.382 / 0.227
21 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 1'48.146 1.414 / 0.032
22 Hafizh SYAHRIN KTM 1'48.496 1.764 / 0.350
23 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 1'48.914 2.182 / 0.418