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Qatar MotoGP, Lusail Practice | Alex Marquez comes out to play in the day, Acosta into Q2

Gold & Goose

Alex Marquez made the most of the rescheduled Practice session for the Qatar MotoGP opener at go quickest just before qualifying for curtain raiser gets underway at the Lusail International Circuit.

The Spaniard has maintained a fairly low key presence during the build up to the 2024 MotoGP opening round in the shadow of his new team-mate and brother Marc Marquez arriving in the Gresini Racing squad.

However, at the venue where Gresini has reigned supreme for the past two seasons with Enea Bastianini and Fabio di Giannantonio, the younger of the Marquez brothers proved he can’t be discounted alongside Marc to bring the Italian outfit a hat-trick of Qatari wins.


After officials decided to reschedule the all-important Practice session to Saturday morning following unexpected wet weather on Friday evening, the teams had to account for the differing track conditions in the hot temperatures of day-time hours in their attempts to book a spot direct to Q2.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, it was Ducati who once again looked to be the form team with six of its entries safely making it through, Marquez leading a Desmosedici 1-2-3-4 of himself, Jorge Martin, di Giannantonio and Pecco Bagnaia, while Enea Bastianini and Marc Marquez also made it into the top ten in eighth and tenth respectively.

Best of the rest was Maverick Vinales, who overcame a technical issue at the start of the shortened session to bounce back for fifth fastest on the Aprilia.

He headed up star performer Pedro Acosta, who made good on his form from practice to comfortably make it into Q2 for his maiden MotoGP race as the highest-placed KTM rider in sixth. However, the Spaniard did get a little surprise mid-way through the session with an off at Turn 5.

Aleix Espargaro made it two factory Aprilias inside the top ten in seventh, while Brad Binder squeezed into Q2 on the factory KTM.

The results might have been different were it not for Binder’s team-mate Jack Miller dumping his RC16 at Turn 1 in the final seconds of the session, scuppering several quick laps in the process.

As such, those going through to Q1 include both Trackhouse Racing Aprilias, though the new American team did make an impression by teetering on the edge of Q2 in 11th and 12th, while Marco Bezzecchi’s difficult start to the year continued in 13th.

In a continuation of 2023, Yamaha and Honda again struggled to find single lap pace with Fabio Quartararo the best of the former in 14th, while the latter could only count Johann Zarco in 16th as its best representative.

As a measure of the difficulties still facing Honda, Luca Marini - the pole sitter in Qatar only four months ago - was 22nd and last after crashing early on.

🇶🇦 ⏱️ 2024 Qatar MotoGP, Lusail | Practice Results

Saturday | Conditions - Dry, Sunny

🇶🇦 ⏱️ 2024 Qatar MotoGP Results | Lusail International Circuit, Qatar | Practice Results | Round 1 of 21
Pos.NameNat.TeamMotorcycleLap Time
1Alex Marquez🇪🇦Gresini RacingDucati GP231m 51.108
2Jorge Martin🇪🇦Prima Pramac RacingDucati GP241m 51.118
3Fabio di Giannantonio🇮🇹Pertamina Enduro VR46 RacingDucati GP231m 51.217
4Pecco Bagnaia🇮🇹Ducati Leonovo TeamDucati GP241m 51.238
5Maverick Vinales🇪🇦Aprilia RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 51.356
6Pedro Acosta🇪🇦Red Bull GasGas Factory Tech3KTM RC161m 51.372
7Aleix Espargaro🇪🇦Aprilia RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 51.425
8Enea Bastianini🇮🇹Ducati Leonovo TeamDucati GP241m 51.454
9Marc Marquez🇪🇦Gresini RacingDucati GP231m 51.469
10Brad Binder🇿🇦Red Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 51.487
11Raul Fernandez 🇪🇦Trackhouse RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 51.519
12Miguel Oliveira🇵🇹Trackhouse RacingAprilia RS-GP1m 51.578
13Marco Bezzecchi🇮🇹Pertamina Enduro VR46 RacingDucati GP231m 51.931
14Fabio Quartararo🇫🇷Monster Energy YamahaYamaha M11m 52.088
15Jack Miller🇦🇺Red Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 52.216
16Johann Zarco🇫🇷LCR HondaHonda RC213V1m 52.313
17Joan Mir🇪🇦Repsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 52.321
18Augusto Fernandez🇪🇦Red Bull GasGas Factory Tech3KTM RC161m 52.547
19Alex Rins🇪🇦Monster Energy YamahaYamaha M11m 52.924
20Takaaki Nakagami🇯🇵LCR HondaHonda RC213V1m 52.935
21Franco Morbidelli🇮🇹Prima Pramac RacingDucati GP241m 53.423
22Luca Marini🇮🇹Repsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 53.536

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