Danilo Petrucci posted the fastest ever MotoGP lap around Jerez with the top 14 riders all going under the outright lap record in a frantic FP3 session that had it all.
Overnight rain and cool temperatures left the track in perfection condition and it wasn’t long before Alex Rins, Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez all improved on their Friday times.
Just as the session was about to heat up, Cal Crutchlow lost the front end of his LCR RC213V. Crutchlow looked shaken up, but was okay. However, the air fence that Crutchlow’s Honda piled into wasn’t and with th13 minutes to go, the session was red flagged as running repairs were made.
After the short delay, fireworks and blistering lap times ensued. It wasn’t long before Jorge Lorenzo found himself fastest and the birthday boy was on the cusp on Crutchlow’s lap record. Fabio Quartararo then went 0.001 second fastest than Lorenzo.
The first man to get under the lap record was Taka Nakagami, however, his name was top in the record books for all of three seconds as Petrucci through to take the fastest lap.
It was then a familiar face in Rossi who went fastest, before Marquez, fully equipped with soft rubber, moved the goalposts and went fastest by nearly half a second. However, it didn’t last long as Petrucci took the top spot back and held on for the remaining seconds.
Behind Petrucci and Marquez, Quartararo left it late and jumped into third position, just ahead of Andrea Dovizioso as the Ducati’s continued thier improved running at Jerez.
The factory Suzuki duo of Joan Mir and Alex Rins were fifth and sixth respectively with the LCR Honda pair of Nakagami and Crutchlow just behind. Franco Morbidelli and Lorenzo held onto the automatic spots into Q2 with Lorenzo just 0.419 seconds off of Petrucci’s lap time.
It was another tough morning for the Monster energy factory Yamaha team with both Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales needing to go through Q1 once again with eleventh and fifteenth place finishes respectively.