The KTM duo topped the timesheets in Practice with Bagnaia in the danger zone once again.
It’s game on at the MotoGP™ Guru by Gryfyn Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix as the title fight intensifies once again with Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing) bagging himself a Q2 spot as Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) faces Q1.
It was Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Brad Binder who took top honours in Practice after his 1:27.943 saw him as the only rider to break the 1:28 barrier. Home hero Jack Miller (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) was next up behind his teammate.
A late-time attack from the Aussie saw him please the home crowd as took 2nd place on Day 1. Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing) has looked strong from the word go. The Spaniard put in an impressive consistent run, as well as a decent time attack to finish Friday in 3rd place.
Red sectors everywhere you look
With Friday afternoon’s Practice session deciding who goes through to Q2, the riders spent the majority of the session working on their race packages before biting the screen for their late time attacks.
The time attacks started coming in earlier than usual, with 15 minutes remaining the soft rubber was already seeing the Phillip Island circuit as the battle for Q2 contention had begun.
The Aprilias led the way as the session edged nearer to the ten-minute mark. Flying laps then came in from the Ducati brigade as the Prima Pramac Racing duo of Jorge Martin and Johann Zarco put in their flying laps with the times continuing to tumble.
The KTMs left it late but showed exactly what they’re capable of in Phillip Island as they sealed the deal ahead of Maverick Viñales.
Jorge Martin may have suffered a devastating blow to his title chances last weekend, but he’s looking like he has the edge over his title rival Francesco Bagnaia in Australia. The Spaniard is looking confident and ended Day 1 in 4th place.
Pol Espargaro (GASGAS Factory Racing Tech3) rounded out the top five as he continued to show his worth in MotoGP™. The Spaniard pipped Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) to the 5th spot by just 0.005s.
Fabio Di Giannantonio (Gresini Racing MotoGP™) was showing a very strong pace throughout the session. The Italian finished 0.509s away from the top spot in P7, and just 0.001s ahead of his former Gresini teammate Enea Bastianini (Ducati Lenovo Team).
It’s as close as ever in Phillip Island, only another 0.003s further back you’ll find Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) who did find himself at the top of the timesheets at one point. The Catalan was pushed down to P9 after setting an identical lap time to Johann Zarco who classified one position behind in P10.
Disaster for the World Champion
Francesco Bagnaia finds himself in Q1 for the second weekend in a row. The Italian had multiple bites at the cherry as he chipped away at his lap time with the clock ticking down. Pecco was unable to threaten the top 10 however as he finished 0.182s away from a Q2 spot in P11.