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MotoGP Catalunya: Quartararo surprised himself with FP4 pace

Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo was truly on a roll after qualifying on MotoGP pole for the fifth time in as many races at Barcelona this afternoon. 

Becoming the first rider to take five consecutive pole positions since Marc Marquez in 2014, the Frenchman sailed to the fastest time of the afternoon despite having his final flying lap disrupted by yellow flags after both Jack Miller and Pol Espargaro crashed out in the closing minutes. 

“Really happy with today, I’m feeling great with the bike” Quartararo said from Parc Ferme.


“In FP4 we wanted to try both tyres - medium and hard - and actually both are working good but right now I don't know which one to choose. The feeling is really similar for me and lap-times are both really good, so I’m really happy. 

“Qualifying was great. I had a little bit more in the last lap but I found the yellow flag. I think that we can make a great race tomorrow. There’s just a question mark over which tyre will we will use.

“Last year I think almost everyone raced with soft/soft. Okay, the tyres are different compared to last year, but the consistency is much better. 

“I was riding this morning with 24, 25 laps on the tyre and made high 40's, so the medium is good and, if tomorrow morning the warm up is dry, I will try to make more laps with the hard to see if it works. We know that the medium is doing the race distance with great lap times so we will check the hard tomorrow but in any ways, both tyres are working well. It’s not difficult to warm up the hard tyre, straightaway I had a good feeling, so for me it's not a problem, just do a great warm up lap and I think is enough.”

Showing off metronomic pace throughout the race-simulation final practice, the Monster Energy rider surprised even himself with how quickly and easily the consistent tempo flowed, with the Frenchman confident of a good performance for Sunday’s 24-lap contest but adamant he isn’t holding anything back.

“When I saw the 39's coming in FP4 I was quite surprised, because, yes I was close to the limits but I have not much extra” he explained. 

“For sure, when you are on a Sunday, you want more and you can do a little bit more but this is more because it's the race day but I will not say ‘extra’.

“From the beginning of the year I'm keeping good pace but I don't feel it’s more difficult to keep my feet on the ground. I see that how I'm working is going well so I have not the necessity to change. I want to keep the same, same work, physically and mentally, with the team. Everything is going well so I want to keep the direction."

The Catalunya race will see an expected 24,000 fans allowed inside the Montmeló circuit, with many already attending over Friday and Saturday. 

“I‘m so happy to see the fans back at the circuit,” Quartararo concluded. “I think that‘s giving everyone a boost. Thanks to the team, and thanks to everyone, and let‘s enjoy the race tomorrow.”

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