Portuguese MotoGP Race: Bastianini Leads Second Practice, Marquez Crashes Ducati for First Time

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MotoGP Portuguese GP: Bastianini tops FP2, Marquez has first Ducati crash

The challenging dusty conditions that characterized the morning session notably improved for the second practice, resulting in a significant enhancement in lap times by over 1.5 seconds.

Leading the pack on his factory team Ducati, Bastianini set an impressive pace clocking in at 1m38.057s, just 0.118s ahead of KTM’s Jack Miller.

Despite enduring his first race weekend crash of the year on the Gresini Ducati, Marquez managed to secure the third position. The eight-time world champion slid off at Turn 5 late in the session.

Jorge Martin clinched the fourth spot on the Pramac Ducati followed by KTM’s Brad Binder. However, both factory Yamahas surprised rookie sensation Pedro Acosta (Tech3 GasGas) by relegating him out of the top 10, pushing him into Q1 for Saturday’s qualifying.

Portuguese MotoGP Race
Portuguese MotoGP Race (Credits: Motorsport)

In the early stages of the second practice, VR46 Ducati rider Marco Bezzecchi set the pace with a 1m39.996s, but soon his teammate Fabio Di Giannantonio took over with a 1m39.936s.

Fabio Quartararo from the factory Yamaha team then surpassed them with a 1m39.199s, holding the fastest lap for about 20 minutes until Marc Marquez clocked in a 1m39.110s, marking his first stint at the top.

Subsequently, Martin and Aprilia’s Maverick Vinales, who made notable progress on fresh soft rubber, overtook Marquez. However, Marquez reclaimed his lead with a time of 1m38.629s with 18 minutes remaining. He further improved with a 1m38.559s before Bastianini ultimately secured the top spot with a time of 1m38.057s with 12 minutes left.

Marquez’s attempt to regain his position was thwarted by a crash at the beginning of his final run. He lost control entering the downhill braking of Turn 5 and slid off, coinciding with his teammate Alex Marquez’s crash at Turn 14.

Despite the mishap, Marquez retained the third position behind Miller and Bastianini.

Following Martin and Binder were Bezzecchi and Vinales, with reigning world champion Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati) and the Yamaha duo of Quartararo and Alex Rins completing the top 10.

A late surge by the Yamaha pair meant Acosta missed out on a spot in Q2 by a mere 0.039s, finishing 11th ahead of Di Giannantonio, Alex Marquez (Gresini), and Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro, who crashed in the final stages of the second practice at Turn 4.

Pramac’s Franco Morbidelli also experienced a late crash, placing him in 15th, while Takaaki Nakagami (LCR) emerged as the top Honda in 16th in a challenging session for the Japanese brand, which also saw Luca Marini fall off his bike late in the session.

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