martin leads miller in thai gp fp3, marquez to contest q1

Jorge Martin Thailand MotoGP. 30 September 2022 // Gold & Goose / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202209300195 // Usage for editorial use only //

Jorge Martin banged in the fastest lap of the weekend so far in the closing stages of FP3 in Thailand to head factory Ducati ace Jack Miller.

The majority of the session saw little improvements from the field as they focussed on gathering further race data with the assortment of tyre compound on offer at the Buriram International Circuit, though the anticipated rain continued to hold off on Saturday morning after a fully-dry Friday.

Fabio Quartararo was notably able to improve in the closing segment of the session despite running a set of medium-compound rubber rather than the soft, the Yamaha man lapping just 0.029s adrift of then leader Zarco before later switching to the soft for his qualifying simulation.

Much as in FP2 though the bulk of the field would find themselves unable to improve on their FP3 efforts as a result of a crash for Miller at Turn 3 just as most of the field were on their fast laps in the final seconds.

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Martin was one of those able to improve as he fired in a 1:30.205s to secure the fastest lap of the weekend so far to top the test by just 0.012s ahead of Miller, who posted his effort just prior to his crash courtesy of a handy tow from Honda’s Marc Marquez.

Martin’s Pramac team-mate Johann Zarco was sixth fastest in the test but secured a Q2 berth with third on the combined timetable, with Francesco Bagnaia doing the same with fourth combined despite only setting the 17th best time in this particular session.

Quartararo was third in FP3 and fifth combined with his earlier medium-tyre run, while KTM’s Brad Binder moved himself up to sixth overall on his final gambit having struggled significantly across Friday.

Alex Rins was seventh overall for Suzuki ahead of Gresini’s Enea Bastianini, who pulled a couple of strong efforts in the closing stanza having looked in danger of having to contest the opening session of qualifying once again.

The automatic-Q2 runners were completed by VR46 Ducati twins Marco Bezzecchi and Luca Marini, the duo managing to post improvements just before the yellows came out.

Marginally missing out on a direct-to-Q2 spot was Marquez after he ran wide on what would turn out to be his final competitive lap after making an error on the start of his next one, though with the pace he looks to possess should be in good shape to make the shootout.

Miguel Oliveira ended up 12th in the combined table on the sister KTM just clear of Franco Morbidelli’s Yamaha, while Aprilia continued to struggle in the Thai heat with Aleix Espargaro a lowly 13th and Vinales a disastrous 18th – both RS-GP’s looking vulnerable of missing Q2.

Danilo Petrucci meanwhile continued to find his feet with the Suzuki GSX-RR as he set his best time of the weekend so far, the Italian’s 1:31.828s leaving him at the bottom of the timesheets though only 1.6 seconds down from Martin’s benchmark, with Tetsuta Nagashima also doing a solid job on his LCR Honda to lap just a couple-tenths-of-a-second down on team-mate Alex Marquez.

Keyword: Martin leads Miller in Thai GP FP3, Marquez to contest Q1


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