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Catalan GP: Zarco and Morbidelli split by a whisker in Barcelona

Johann Zarco

Bengaluru, June 5: Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) left it late to snatch top spot from Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) on Day 1 of the Catalan GP at Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona, with the Frenchman's 1:39.235 being 0.021sec quicker than the Italian.

2021 FIM MotoGP World Championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) was 0.166sec off his compatriot's pace in third, a good day at the office for the top three.

Brad Binder ended 0.261sec behind third place Quartararo in fourth, Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) rounds out the top five, just over half a second off the pace as the fans returned to grandstands in Barcelona.

Catalan GP: MotoGP riders happy to see fans return to grandstandsCatalan GP: MotoGP riders happy to see fans return to grandstands

Maverick Vivales finished the day in sixth place, just under a tenth clear of Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) in seventh.

Rookie Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama) cemented a quality P8, with the Italian 0.006sec ahead of home heroes Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) and younger brother Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team).

All the riders currently sitting outside the top 10 will be eager to find some pace on Saturday, especially the likes of Italian GP podium finishers Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar).

The duo ended in P14 and P16 respectively, with the KTM rider lapping on Michelin's hard-hard combination in the latter stages somewhat intriguing.

FP3 begins at 9.55 am local time (1.25pm IST) as the grid push for an automatic place in Q2.

Qualifying will then decide the grid from 2.10pm (5.40pm IST), with the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya sure to deliver another show. Can Morbidelli do it again? We will find out on Saturday!

The MotoGP brings the noise in Barcelona at the earlier time of 1pm local time (4.30pm) on Sunday (June 6).

The Indian audience can catch all the live action on Eurosport SD/HD channels and the same will be live streamed on discovery + app.

Top 10 combined:

1. Johann Zarco (Pramac Racing) - 1:39.235
2. Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) + 0.021
3. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) + 0.166
4. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) + 0.427
5. Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) + 0.525
6. Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) + 0.586
7. Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) + 0.679
8. Enea Bastianini (Avintia Esponsorama) + 0.742
9. Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) + 0.748
10. Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team) + 0.748

(By a special arrangement with Dorna Sports)

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Story first published: Saturday, June 5, 2021, 10:10 [IST]
Other articles published on Jun 5, 2021