After a two-day break the pre-season MotoGP test at Losail International Circuit resumed today in Qatar, with the PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team pairing of Franco Morbidelli and Valentino Rossi ending the third day in the desert 11th and 13th respectively.
Morbidelli had a strong start to the day, posting the fastest time early on in the session and staying within the top-ten for the majority of the seven hours. The Italian, who focused on testing a new front fork and shock absorber settings, completed 55 laps and ended the day 11th – despite making no time attack – with a 1min 54.367secs lap.
Rossi meanwhile continued to compare the chassis available, alongside testing a new cowling on his Yamaha YZR-M1. Further progress was made, including improving his race pace from the first two days of the Qatar Test. During a strong session with positive progress made during the 56 laps completed, Rossi posted the 13th best time: 1min 54.618secs.
Tomorrow’s track action at Losail International Circuit will once again begin at 2pm local time (7pm MYT), with the penultimate day of the 2021 MotoGP pre-season test concluding at 9pm local time (2am MYT).
Today we have been working hard testing and I didn’t really do a proper time attack. We focused a little bit more on trying to make some improvements and squeeze a bit more performance out of the race configuration. At the end of the day we finished outside of the top-ten, but it’s still early and the first day back after two days of no riding. We know the margins between riders will be small in the race, it’s going to make it difficult and every small detail is going to make the difference. We want to analyse everything to help us have a good race in the first two weekends.
Although I might not be happy with P13, it was a good day because we have improved upon the first two days of the test: both the time attack and the race pace are better. I think we are doing well, but the top guys are a little faster so there is still some work we need to do. We tried something new today with the chassis and cowling, which I like and this is good for improving the bike, so it’s been a positive day. We have improved everywhere, but especially the grip, and that made today very enjoyable. Now we will check the data to see where else we can improve.
|1||Jack Miller||43||Ducati Lenovo||1:53.183|
|2||Fabio Quartararo||20||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||+0.080|
|3||Maverick Viñales||12||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||+0.327|
|4||Johann Zarco||5||Pramac Racing||+0.716|
|5||Pol Espargaro||44||Repsol Honda Team||+0.716|
|6||Aleix Espargaro||41||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||+0.788|
|11||Franco Morbidelli||21||PETRONAS Yamaha SRT||+1.184|
|13||Valentino Rossi||46||PETRONAS Yamaha SRT||+1.435|