Barcelona, September 2, 2023: A positive Saturday for Marc Marquez who surpassed his early weekend expectations, earning entrance into Q2 and fighting for the top ten in the Sprint. Joan Mir meanwhile aims for more on Sunday.
Faint spells of rain couldn’t keep the fans away as the grandstands around the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya steadily filled through the day. Marc Marquez did his best to give the home fans something to cheer about as he hustled his Repsol Honda Team RC213V around the track. A near-perfect lap in Q1 saw the eight-time World Champion secure a spot in the top two and advance through to Q2 to secure 12th, a result he believed would be impossible less than 24 hours ago.
From the fourth row, the #93 gave his all in the opening half of the race to stay with the leading group, able to match their pace. As the race went on and the leaders opened their advantage, Marquez settled into his rhythm to bring his Honda home once again. Crossing the line in 11th, Marquez is content with the overall speed he showed on Saturday – the Q1 lap providing a welcome confidence boost.
On the other side of the Repsol Honda Team garage, Joan Mir’s work continued. Improved grip was once again his and the team’s primary objective during practice. Qualifying and the Sprint race highlighted that there is still work to be done overnight for the 2020 MotoGP World Champion.
Sunday’s feature race is scheduled to start at 14:00 Local Time with higher temperatures currently predicted. This combined with the full 24-lap race distance will present the 22 MotoGP riders with a very different challenge when the lights go out.
Marc Marquez (11th)
“I had an important day today, for me, for my feeling and my confidence. It was just Q1, but we were able to do a really strong lap and be much faster than we expected. In the Sprint race I was able to stay with the top group for half the race more or less, pushing to the limit, but we were able to do it. Both of these things give me a bit of extra motivation to keep carrying out our work in this way. Tomorrow will be a much longer race, so let’s see what we can manage in that.”
Joan Mir (21st)
“Today’s race was very difficult, this is clear. We continued to struggle with grip and the reality is that there are many corners here which highlight our weaknesses. The team and I will spend tonight looking at everything deeply to try and improve the situation for tomorrow. I am still able to brake and enter the corner well, but we need to work on the other areas.”
Catalan GP – Sprint Race
|1||ESPARGARO ALEIX||41||SPA||12||Aprilia Racing||Aprilia||20’02.744|
|2||BAGNAIA FRANCESCO||1||ITA||9||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||1.989|
|3||VINALES MAVERICK||12||SPA||7||Aprilia Racing||Aprilia||2.04|
|4||BINDER BRAD||33||RSA||6||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||2.857|
|5||MARTIN JORGE||89||SPA||5||Aprilia Racing||Ducati||4.341|
|6||OLIVEIRA MIGUEL||88||POR||4||RNF MotoGP Team||Aprilia||4.94|
|7||ZARCO JOHANN||5||FRA||3||Pramac Racing||Ducati||6.746|
|8||BEZZECCHI MARCO||72||ITA||2||Mooney VR46 Racing Team||Ducati||6.888|
|9||BASTIANINI ENEA||23||ITA||1||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||8.068|
|10||MARQUEZ ALEX||73||SPA||0||Team Gresini Racing MotoGP||Ducati||10.38|
|11||MARQUEZ MARC||93||SPA||0||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||11.823|
|12||MARINI LUCA||10||ITA||0||Mooney VR46 Racing Team||Ducati||11.9|
|13||DI GIANNANTONIO FABIO||49||ITA||0||Team Gresini Racing MotoGP||Ducati||12.018|
|14||FERNANDEZ RAUL||25||SPA||0||RNF MotoGP Team||Aprilia||13.284|
|15||MORBIDELLI FRANCO||21||ITA||0||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||16.207|
|16||MILLER JACK||43||AUS||0||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||16.404|
|17||FERNANDEZ AUGUSTO||37||SPA||0||Tech3 GASGAS Factory Racing||KTM||16.534|
|18||QUARTARARO FABIO||20||FRA||0||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||17.147|
|19||LECUONA IKER||27||SPA||0||LCR Honda||Honda||18.658|
|20||NAKAGAMI TAKAAKI||30||JPN||0||LCR Honda||Honda||19.08|
|21||MIR JOAN||36||SPA||0||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||19.574|
|22||ESPARGARO POL||44||SPA||DNF||Tech3 GASGAS Factory Racing||KTM||DNF|