MotoGP 2020: Quartararo storms to home pole at Le Mans as Mir struggles

By Peter Hanson 10 October 2020 509
MotoGP 2020: Quartararo storms to home pole at Le Mans as Mir struggles

Fabio Quartararo stormed to pole position for the French Grand Prix as nearest rival Joan Mir failed to make it out of the first qualifying session. 

Petronas Yamaha rider Quartararo temporarily lost top spot to a flying Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) before taking two tenths off the Australian's time with a lap in one minute and 31.315 seconds. 

The Frenchman, winner in Barcelona a fortnight ago, has a great opportunity to extend his eight-point lead at the top on home soil after Mir (Suzuki Ecstar) finished a disappointing 14th. 

Miller came from way down the pack with a fine final lap and starts ahead of another Ducati rider in Danilo Petrucci, who recorded his best qualifying result of the season, while Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) surprisingly fronts the second row. 

Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha), third in the standings, will need a good start on race day after qualifying fifth ahead of Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) - who surrendered the championship lead to Quartararo after a woeful time last time out in Barcelona. 

Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing) was second after the provisional laps but starts in seventh, with Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing) also on the third row. Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha), meanwhile, is in 10th.  

It was disappointing session for Mir, though, who could not make it out a Q1 that was delayed after Miguel Oliveira's engine spilt oil on the track to bring out the red flag in the final practice session.

Qualifying results

1. Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha)
2. Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) +0.222s
3. Danilo Petrucci (Ducati) +0.359s
4. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) +0.371s
5. Maverick Vinales (Monster Energy Yamaha) +0.404s
6. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) +0.407s
7. Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing) +0.437s
8. Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) +0.480s
9. Johann Zarco (Esponsorama Racing) +0.517s
10. Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha) +0.574s
11. Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha) +0.576
12. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) +0.694s

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Peter Hanson