Francesco Bagnaia on pole after edging out Maverick Vinales at the Red Bull Ring

Francesco Bagnaia pips Maverick Vinales to pole position at the Austrian MotoGP, while Jorge Martin suffers deleted lap nightmare.
Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP, Austrian MotoGP, 18 August
Francesco Bagnaia, MotoGP, Austrian MotoGP, 18 August

After filtering out of pit lane behind Luca Marini, Pol Espargaro used the Ducati rider as a reference in order to go fastest following the opening flurry of laps. 

Marini then bettered the GASGAS Tech 3 rider’s lap before the Spaniard responded straight away with a time of 1:29.295s.

Perhaps the pre-session favourite to advance given the performance Brad Binder has shown on the factory KTM so far this weekend, Jack Miller then showed his true pace as he went quickest by nearly two tenths. 

After starting his final time attack run with Espargaro again following closely, the Mooney VR46 rider got his head down and managed to up his pace as he went quickest.

However, Marini’s time at the front was short-lived as Miller broke into the 1m 28s barrier and with it finished Q1 fastest.

An all-action start to Q2 saw Binder initially goe fastest before having his lap time deleted, before Maverick Vinales went five tenths clear of the chasing pack.

Vinales was then quickly bumped down to P3 as Binder and Jorge Martin went ahead of the Aprilia rider, however, Martin was next to have his lap cancelled due to exceeding track limits. 

While teammate Aleix Espargaro crashed at turn three, Vinales continued to show stunning pace as he became the only rider to break under the 1m 29s barrier.

At the start of the final time attack runs Vinales’ time was under immediate threat from Martin who went top.

But Vinales, who was directly behind Martin on-track, went close to three tenths clear of the Ducati rider before Binder and Miller made it two KTM’s on the front row.

Bagnaia then put his factory Ducati into third before going P1 on his next lap around.

With Vinales making a mistake at turn four, Bagnaia's time remained unchallenged as title rivals Martin (had three deleted laps in Q2) and Bezzecchi could only managed 12th and seventh respectively. 

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