Francesco Bagnaia ended on top at the end of Day 1 of free practices of the Portuguese GP, the third round of the 2021 MotoGP season, scheduled this weekend at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve, near Portimão.
Fast already in this morning's FP1, held in mixed conditions with the track scattered in damp patches before it started to dry up in the final minutes of the session, Pecco confirmed his excellent form at the Portuguese circuit also this afternoon. Despite the track not being in perfect conditions again, after the light rain that fell just a few moments before the start of the session, the Italian rider made a good “time attack”, closing in 1:39.866 and ending the day in the first place.
It was a positive start for Jack Miller too. Back out on track today for the first time after undergoing surgery on his right forearm only ten days ago, he showed that he felt comfortable riding the Desmosedici GP right from the start. The Australian closed Friday in fifth place, just 470 thousandths behind his teammate, thanks to a fast lap in 1:40.336.
Francesco Bagnaia (#63 Ducati Lenovo Team) - 1st (1:39.866)
"I'm delighted with the work done during this first day: in FP2, my feeling with the bike was excellent, and it allowed me to set the fastest time even though the track conditions weren't perfect. Tomorrow the temperatures will be higher, and the grip levels too. It will be important to get into Q2 right away and, above all, to have a consistent pace in FP4."
Jack Miller (#43 Ducati Lenovo Team) - 5th (1:40.336)
"I'm pleased to be back here at Portimão, a track I enjoy! I had no issues with the arm, and I've felt comfortable on the bike immediately from the start. The conditions today were not optimal after the rain that fell on several occasions. Hopefully, we can find a more linear situation tomorrow that will allow us to work on our race pace and push in qualifying".
The Ducati Lenovo Team riders will be back on track tomorrow, Saturday 17th April, at 9:55 am (10:55 am Italian time) for the third free practice session, while qualifying will take place after FP4 from 2:10 pm (3:10 pm Italian time).