Marc Marquez takes his best grid spot since his return, while Pol Espargaro is focused on further improvements on Sunday ahead of the Aragon GP in 2021.
The 3rd free practice dawned and the anticipation for the shootout for the Q2 positions was in the air. Marc Marquez was able to reduce his best time to 1’47.185 as eighth in FP3, secure a place in Q2 and keep up with the competition. He later suffered his second crash of the weekend on his final lap of FP3 and slipped into Turn 14. Marquez was able to complete one final flying lap unharmed but still maintained his place in the top ten. There were no barriers for Marquez as he rolled out of the pits for FP4. The # 93 led the session and improved its lap time right at the end. It’s been a very consistent and productive session for Marquez, all but three of his 13 laps in the low 1:48 and the eight-time world champion was happy with his performance on used rubber.
In the second quarter, Marquez was able to generate further profits and fell into the 1:46 scale around the MotorLand Aragon Circuit. A personal best of 1’46.736 on his last lap of the session was just a tenth outside of his lap record. Fourth on the grid is Marquez’s best result since his injury break, after starting from fifth in the Grand Prix of Germany, Austria and Great Britain.
Saturday in Aragon started well for Pol Espargaro, who continued to improve his lap time, dropping to 1’47.134 – 2.4 seconds faster than his FP1 time to grab a spot in Q2. Continuous improvements followed in Free Practice 4, where the Silverstone pole setter put together a series of constant laps to finish eighth in the session, just 0.381 seconds behind his teammate. With an already secured place in Q2, Espargaro and his team used the Q1 time to finalize their plans for their 15-minute session. Espargaro set a best time of 1’47.194 with his time from FP3 in the morning and finished eighth on the grid on Sunday. This is the first time that the # 44 has entered the top ten in a row in 2021.
The race on Sunday starts at 2:00 p.m. local time and will run over 23 laps.