Quartararo fastest at TT Assen FP3

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Fabio Quartararo left it late to go quickest in FP3 and on the combined times at the TT Assen, a new lap record of a 1:32.471 leaves the Frenchman 0.109 ahead of second place Danilo Petrucci, with Maverick Vinales holding P3 on the combined times despite failing to improve in FP3.

Temperatures were soaring in the Netherlands on Saturday morning and at the beginning of the session, the riders were focused on finding the best tyre combination and set up for Sunday’s race. Only Aprilia Racing Team Gresini’s Aleix Espargaro and Tito Rabat had improved their Friday times in the first ten minutes of the session as FP3 remained quiet in terms of top ten changes.

That was until Takaaki Nakagami, with just under 20 minutes to go, made a move into the automatic Q2 places at the expense of teammate Cal Crutchlow. Franco Morbidelli was the next big mover as the riders then started to slot in the fresh soft Michelin rubber – the pace was being upped.

Petrucci then pounced. A new lap record was set by the Italian as he ousted Viñales from P1 and with under ten minutes to go, both Marc Marquez and Valentino Rossi were on the fringes of the top ten – Marquez P10, Rossi P11. Marquez, with eight minutes to go, emerged on a soft rear for the first time this weekend.

And the Championship leader immediately set the timing screens alight, three red sectors were followed by an orange fourth as the number 93 launched himself to P3. The pressure was on Rossi to get a lap in, and The Doctor did just that.

P5 for Rossi and seemingly safe from having to contest Q1, but there would be late drama for the nine-time World Champion as his fastest lap would get cancelled for exceeding track limits at the Geert Timmer chicane. Q1 beckons for one Yamaha. Andrea Dovizioso, Jack Miller and Morbidelli slammed in late personal best times to go into the all-important top ten, this pushed last year’s second-place finisher Alex Rins out.

So it’s Quartararo who finishes inside the top two for a tenth session in a row to head Petrucci and Viñales – the latter one of only three riders to now improve their Friday time.

Marquez is the leading Honda in fourth, followed by Nakagami and Morbidelli as three Yamahas occupy the top six places. Miller and Dovizioso left it late to cement their place in Q2 in P7 and P8, Crutchlow squeezes through in P9 and Joan Mir capitalises on Rossi’s lap cancellation to grab P10.

Rins and Rossi, two leading contenders, will fight in Q1 this afternoon.

Full FP3 Result: 

Pos. Rider Bike Time Gap 1st/Prev.
1 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 1'32.471  
2 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 1'32.580 0.109 / 0.109
3 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 1'32.688 0.217 / 0.108
4 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 1'32.890 0.419 / 0.202
5 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 1'32.910 0.439 / 0.020
6 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 1'32.913 0.442 / 0.003
7 Jack MILLER Ducati 1'32.918 0.447 / 0.005
8 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 1'32.922 0.451 / 0.004
9 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 1'32.956 0.485 / 0.034
10 Joan MIR Suzuki 1'33.068 0.597 / 0.112
11 Alex RINS Suzuki 1'33.138 0.667 / 0.070
12 Andrea IANNONE Aprilia 1'33.205 0.734 / 0.067
13 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 1'33.228 0.757 / 0.023
14 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 1'33.279 0.808 / 0.051
15 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 1'33.636 1.165 / 0.357
16 Pol ESPARGARO KTM 1'33.868 1.397 / 0.232
17 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 1'33.962 1.491 / 0.094
18 Tito RABAT Ducati 1'34.257 1.786 / 0.295
19 Johann ZARCO KTM 1'34.258 1.787 / 0.001
20 Hafizh SYAHRIN KTM 1'34.326 1.855 / 0.068
21 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 1'35.136 2.665 / 0.810