Italian MotoGP | Pecco Bagnaia snatches last gasp P1 in FP at Mugello

Pecco Bagnaia surges to the top of the Friday free practice timesheets at the very last moment of FP2 to give Ducati the edge in the Italian MotoGP

Pecco Bagnaia - Ducati 2021

Pecco Bagnaia maintained Ducati’s perfect Friday record so far this year by leading the way at the close of free practice two with a last gasp effort that successfully unseated Alex Rins from the top spot.

The Italian, currently second in the standings to Fabio Quartararo, heads to his home round as one of the favourites for victory at a Mugello circuit, despite having not yet achieved the feat in his career.

However, with Ducati enjoying a strong start to the season, it is expected to be the bike to beat this weekend on a circuit that has been kind to its top speed superior Desmosedici over the years.

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Up until the final moments of the session it appeared Rins was on course to end the day in front in what would have been a significant boost for the Suzuki rider, currently on the back foot after a third fall in five races last time out at Le Mans. 

Nonetheless, his confidence will have risen with a best time less than a tenth off Bagnaia’s benchmark 1m 46.147s.

In third position, Franco Morbidelli led the Yamaha charge despite losing a significant amount of time in a straight line, aboard a 2019-base specification Yamaha M1 that gives up around 20km/h to its rivals in speed.

Despite this, Morbidelli was swift enough through the curves to get the better of Factory counterpart and championship leader Fabio Quartararo, who might have been quickest had his final lap not been spoiled by congregating bikes touring around him, a frustration he demonstrated in an animated way on abandoning his effort.

On a circuit not necessarily expected to suit the KTM package, Brad Binder led factory team-mate Miguel Oliveira - another rider suffering from a dismal start to his 2021 MotoGP campaign - in fifth and sixth respectively, the latter having headed the timesheets for the majority of FP2.

Takaaki Nakagami was again Honda’s best representative in seventh place, ahead of Maverick Vinales, who had to rely on his FP1 time to ensure his provisional Q2 spot after running off in the latter stages of FP2.

With all six manufacturers cracking the top ten, which for now guarantees them a place in Q2 as it stands, Aleix Espargaro is ninth for Aprilia, while Jack Miller rounds out them out in tenth.

Elsewhere, reigning champion Joan Mir endured a low key day down in 12th position, just ahead of Marc Marquez who despite being quicker than Repsol Honda team-mate Pol Espargaro, may baulk at finding himself in the unfamiliar second half of the timesheet.

Luca Marini was quickest of the Avintia rookies making their home grand prix debut this weekend in 17th, with Enea Bastianini 19th. 

Valentino Rossi, meanwhile, endured a torrid afternoon, twice running off track to find himself down in 21st position, 1.4secs off Petronas SRT Yamaha team-mate Franco Morbidelli.

2021 Italian MotoGP FP1-FP2 Results [Combined] | Mugello

2021 Italian MotoGP FRIDAY FP1-FP2 Results [Combined] | Mugello | Round 6 / 19
PosRiderNat.MotoGP TeamMotoGP BikeTiming
1Francesco BagnaiaITADucati Lenovo TeamDucati GP211m 46.147
2Alex RinsESPTeam Suzuki EcstarSuzuki GSX-RR1m 46.218
3Franco MorbidelliITAPetronas Yamaha SRTYamaha YZF-M11m 46.331
4Fabio QuartararoFRAMonster Energy Yamaha Yamaha YZF-M11m 46.372
5Brad BinderRSARed Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 46.436
6Miguel OliveiraPORRed Bull KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 46.584
7Takaaki NakagamiJPNLCR Honda IdemitsuHonda RC213V1m 46.593
8Maverick VinalesESPMonster Energy Yamaha Yamaha YZF-M11m 46.593
9Aleix EspargaroESPAprilia Racing Team GresiniAprilia RS-GP1m 46.655
10Jack MillerAUSDucati Lenovo TeamDucati GP211m 46.68
11Johann ZarcoFRAPramac RacingDucati GP211m 46.802
12Joan MirESPTeam Suzuki EcstarSuzuki GSX-RR1m 46.847
13Marc MarquezESPRepsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 46.973
14Pol EspargaroESPRepsol Honda TeamHonda RC213V1m 46.986
15Michele PirroESPPramac RacingDucati GP211m 47.107
16Danilo PetrucciITATech3 KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 47.129
17Luca MariniITASky VR46 EsponsoramaDucati GP191m 47.154
18Alex MarquezESPLCR Honda CastrolHonda RC213V1m 47.326
19Enea BastianiniITAAvintia EsponsoramaDucati GP191m 47.480
20Lorenzo SavadoriITAAprilia Racing Team GresiniAprilia RS-GP1m 47.668
21Valentino RossiITAPetronas Yamaha SRTYamaha YZF-M11m 47.719
22Iker LecuonaESPTech3 KTM Factory RacingKTM RC161m 47.792