Saturday in Austria left the Repsol Honda Team wanting more as Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro only managed the third and fifth rows of the grid respectively after two tight Qualifying sessions.
Clear conditions across Saturday saw lap times tumble around the Red Bull Ring as the MotoGP World Championship battled it out first for a spot in the top ten and then for pole later in the day. The Red Bull Ring produced a blistering Q2 session with Marc Marquez’s pole lap record falling.
Once again there was no waiting around for Marc Marquez who was able to improve on his best time from Friday almost immediately. Diligent work throughout Free Practice 3 saw him seal a place in Q2, Marquez making the most of the track time in FP4 to prepare for Qualifying and the race. Progress was made throughout Q2 as Marquez worked to improve his best time, dropping under the 1’23.5 barrier on his penultimate lap. Having set a personal best time through the first sector on his last flying lap, the eight-time World Champion suffered a harmless fall at Turn 3 and while he and his RC213V were unharmed, he was unable to improve his time. Marquez will line up eighth on the grid for the 28-lap race and is ready to do battle, pleased with his overall pace.
Unfortunately for Pol Espargaro the morning session did not go to plan after a fast start and Espargaro missed a top ten position by only 0.017s. The difficulties continued into Q1 as Espargaro, set to make his 250th Grand Prix start this weekend, was unable to battle for the top-two positions and will line up 15th on the grid for Sunday’s race. With a number of big names around him such as Rins and Binder, the scene is set for a recovery ride after Saturday’s troubles.
Forecasts are pointing towards rainfall on Sunday just as the MotoGP race is set to begin at 14:00 Local Time. Both Repsol Honda Team riders are ready to give it their all for the first of two races here at the Red Bull Ring.
Styrian GP Qualifying Result
The Red Bull Ring in Spielberg is located beautifully in the Murtal-region of Styria, Austria. The circuit was originally built in 1969, then known as the Österreichring. In 1996 it was rebuilt with the track-layout it still had when, in 2011, it was reopened as the Red Bull Ring and… read more.
|Length||4.3 km / 2.68 miles|
|Longest straight||626 m / 2053.81 ft|
Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Steiermark, Austria - View in Google Maps
|Pole Position||1m28.539s (176.7 Km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2023)|
|Race Lap||1m29.840s (174.2 Km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2023)|
|Race Time||42'14.886 (172.8 Km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2022)|
|2023 Race Winner||Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati)|
|2023 Sprint Winner||Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati)|