until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League


Miller leads Ducati 1-2 in Styrian Grand Prix first practice

by Matt Beer
3 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Pramac rider Jack Miller led a Ducati 1-2 in first MotoGP practice of the second Red Bull Ring weekend, leading works rider Andrea Dovizioso by just 0.004s.

It took less than 10 minutes for the best time across all of last weekend’s practice sessions to be surpassed, with LCR Honda rider Takaaki Nakagami firing in a 1m24.103s to take an early lead of around two tenths.

Dovizioso lapped within four-hundredths of Nakagami’s time 20 minutes later, but it wasn’t until the very final minutes of the session that a new benchmark was recorded.

This came from Joan Mir, running in the tow of Nakagami’s team-mate Cal Crutchlow to go fastest by 0.068s, before Tech 3 KTM rider Miguel Oliveira recorded the first sub-1m24s effort of the weekend.

But moments later Miller came up with a 1m23.859s that secured him the top spot with FP1.

Dovizioso ran through the gravel at Turn 4 during one of his late-session flying laps, but bounced back with an improvement at the chequered flag, coming up just short of Miller’s effort.

Oliveira settled for third, 0.039s down, while Nakagami was the last rider within a tenth in fourth, being the only rider in the top seven to forgo using a soft rear in the end.

Mir made up a top five split by 0.102s and was two tenths up on sixth-placed Franco Morbidelli, the Petronas Yamaha rider moving up to sixth late at the chequered flag.

Factory rider Brad Binder and Iker Lecuona (Tech3 KTM) made it three KTMs in the top eight, while Yamaha works man Maverick Vinales and championship leader Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha) completed the top 10.

Binder’s factory KTM team-mate Pol Espargaro, who fought for victory in the Austrian Grand Prix last weekend before the red flag interruption and his subsequent clash with Oliveira, was 11th-fastest, forgoing a late-FP1 qualifying simulation.

The top 20 were split by less than a second, with 21st-placed Stefan Bradl – subbing for the injured Marc Marquez at the factory Honda team – 1.055s off the pace.

Avintia Ducati rider Johann Zarco was unable to pass fit for Friday practice, as Thursday medical examinations were due to take place less than 48 hours after his surgery on Wednesday and he was thus ineligible.

Zarco, who had a pin installed into a fractured right scaphoid following his horror crash with Franco Morbidelli in last weekend’s race, has been officially handed a pitlane start penalty for his role in the incident.

Zarco’s team-mate Tito Rabat was the sole rider to crash during FP1, falling late on at Turn 4.

Practice 1 Results

Pos Name Team Bike Gap Next Gap Leader Best Time
1 Jack Miller Pramac Racing Ducati 1m23.859s
2 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati Team Ducati +0.004s +0.004s 1m23.863s
3 Miguel Oliveira Red Bull KTM Tech 3 KTM +0.035s +0.039s 1m23.898s
4 Takaaki Nakagami LCR Honda Honda +0.052s +0.091s 1m23.95s
5 Joan Mir Team Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki +0.011s +0.102s 1m23.961s
6 Franco Morbidelli Petronas Yamaha SRT Yamaha +0.237s +0.339s 1m24.198s
7 Brad Binder Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +0.053s +0.392s 1m24.251s
8 Iker Lecuona Red Bull KTM Tech 3 KTM +0.05s +0.442s 1m24.301s
9 Maverick Viñales Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha +0.023s +0.465s 1m24.324s
10 Fabio Quartararo Petronas Yamaha SRT Yamaha +0.057s +0.522s 1m24.381s
11 Pol Espargaró Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +0.016s +0.538s 1m24.397s
12 Michele Pirro Pramac Racing Ducati +0.111s +0.649s 1m24.508s
13 Danilo Petrucci Ducati Team Ducati +0.009s +0.658s 1m24.517s
14 Bradley Smith Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +0.106s +0.764s 1m24.623s
15 Alex Rins Team Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki +0.005s +0.769s 1m24.628s
16 Alex Marquez Repsol Honda Team Honda +0.062s +0.831s 1m24.69s
17 Valentino Rossi Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha +0.009s +0.84s 1m24.699s
18 Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda Honda +0.065s +0.905s 1m24.764s
19 Tito Rabat Avintia Racing Ducati +0.042s +0.947s 1m24.806s
20 Aleix Espargaró Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +0.002s +0.949s 1m24.808s
21 Stefan Bradl Repsol Honda Team Honda +0.106s +1.055s 1m24.914s
22 Johann Zarco Avintia Racing Ducati
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