Takaaki Nakagami fastest ahead of fellow Honda rider Marc Marquez during warm-up for the 2021 Americas MotoGP at COTA.

LCR's Nakagami, who has qualified fifth, was one of the few to use soft tyres front and rear this morning, although world championship leader Fabio Quartararo (fourth) also tried the all-soft combination.

Most others ran hard front and soft rears, but rear tyre choice especially is still open for the race and Jack Miller, fuming after a season-worst tenth in qualifying, was among those to try the hard rear this morning.

But it was the hard front tyre that caught the Australian out in warm-up, falling into Turn 1.

Marquez will start this afternoon's grand prix from the front row - behind title contenders Francesco Bagnaia and Quartararo - for the first time this year and having won six of the seven previous COTA MotoGP races, falling while leading in 2019.

Marquez and Bagnaia spent part of warm-up 'shadow boxing' for the race, the Honda rider following Bagnaia for several laps then putting a pass on the Ducati, who then chased Marquez to see his strengths and weaknesses.

Johann Zarco is riding for the first time since arm pump surgery, while Suzuki's reigning champion Joan Mir has a Kevin Schwantz-style helmet and racing number this weekend.

MotoGP is returning to COTA for the first time since the 2019 event, after which further resurfacing work was carried out on around 40% of the track (Turns 1-2, 9-10, 16-19, plus the back straight) to alleviate bumps.

However, bikes and riders are still being badly kicked around, especially through Turns 2 and 10.

COTA has the most corners (20) in MotoGP, including the slowest of the season at just 50km/h (Turn 11). The following back straight is the longest in MotoGP at 1.2km and ends with the hardest braking on the calendar, from over 330km/h to less than 60km/h.

Maverick Vinales has withdrawn from the COTA event after the tragic death of his young cousin Dean Berta Vinales in last weekend's Jerez WorldSSP300 race….

Austin MotoGP, COTA - Warm-up Results
PosRiderNatTeamTime/DiffLapMax (km/h)
1Takaaki NakagamiJPNLCR Honda (RC213V)2'4.074s9/10343k
2Marc MarquezSPARepsol Honda (RC213V)+0.048s8/8344k
3Alex RinsSPASuzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)+0.449s5/9340k
4Fabio QuartararoFRAMonster Yamaha (YZR-M1)+0.457s8/9341k
5Jorge MartinSPAPramac Ducati (GP21)*+0.694s6/8341k
6Joan MirSPASuzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)+0.729s9/9336k
7Aleix EspargaroSPAAprilia Gresini (RS-GP)+0.752s4/10346k
8Johann ZarcoFRAPramac Ducati (GP21)+0.783s10/10352k
9Pol EspargaroSPARepsol Honda (RC213V)+0.836s9/9345k
10Jack MillerAUSDucati Team (GP21)+0.947s6/9346k
11Enea BastianiniITAAvintia Ducati (GP19)*+0.975s7/8344k
12Luca MariniITASky VR46 Avintia Ducati (GP19)*+0.987s6/8342k
13Iker LecuonaSPAKTM Tech3 (RC16)+0.987s3/10343k
14Andrea DoviziosoITAPetronas Yamaha (YZR-M1)+0.990s10/10334k
15Brad BinderRSARed Bull KTM (RC16)+1.104s9/10342k
16Franco MorbidelliITAMonster Yamaha (YZR-M1)+1.135s6/9339k
17Alex MarquezSPALCR Honda (RC213V)+1.147s5/9342k
18Francesco BagnaiaITADucati Team (GP21)+1.157s4/10346k
19Miguel OliveiraPORRed Bull KTM (RC16)+1.702s4/8340k
20Danilo PetrucciITAKTM Tech3 (RC16)+1.890s8/9336k
21Valentino RossiITAPetronas Yamaha (YZR-M1)+1.893s10/10338k

* Rookie

Official COTA MotoGP records:
Best lap:
Marc Marquez SPA Honda 2m 2.135s (2015)
Fastest race lap:
Marc Marquez SPA Honda 2m 3.375s (2014)

By Peter McLaren