Fabio Quartararo has allayed any fears he will feel discomfort on the Yamaha following his heavy spill during free practice at Motorland Aragon, the 2020 MotoGP leader bouncing right back to take a hard-fought pole for tomorrow’s race.

The Frenchman suffered an almost identical crash to that of FP1 under braking for the downhill Turn 14 during a chilly morning FP3 session. However, whereas he separated from the bike in FP1, this time he was flicked into a painful looking high-side, leading to both an impact with the bucking bike and then on the asphalt.

Taken away by stretcher to the medical centre, Quartararo was given the all clear to get back on the bike before pumping in a time good enough for pole position - his fourth of the year and tenth of his short career.

Though he was shown to be limping heavily in and out of the box between runs, Quartararo confirmed he feels fine on the bike once the adrenaline kicks in saying it is a manageable ‘constant’ pain, rather a shifting pain depending on how he rides.

“It was strange because in FP1 we had the same kind of crash, losing the front so early on the brakes, then this morning I had a small ‘stoppie’ then I lost the front in the same moment. It was a strange crash and I felt pain on the leg, plus with the cold in the morning I couldn’t feel my fingers. 

“I was a little bit scared because in the moment it was really painful, but on the bike it is not that painful. I did a great FP4, the 16 laps is not so bad but I didn’t expect to go that well in qualifying, because I wasn’t feeling so good all weekend so happy to get a good lap in.

“Yesterday it was the right hip which was nothing compared to today. When I am on the bike it’s just the out-lap and in-lap where I feel bad, but when I do FP4, it was a constant pain, but not really bad. When I ride it is not so painful. As soon as you have the leathers and helmet on, you forget about everything. Nothing bad, just painful when you’re off the bike.”

Reflecting on the crash itself, which occurred on used tyres, Quartararo insists he may have applied a tiny amount more pressure on the brake but that it was the cold conditions that could be attributed to the fall, leaving him relaxed for the actual race.

“I didn’t do anything wrong, it’s not like I braked 20m too late, I did exactly the same but maybe one bar more pressure [on the brake] and I made this crash. The conditions were really tricky, you need to be really precise and I wanted to push with the used tyre but we had this crash.”

 

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