LE MANS, France – Fabio Quartararo led a Monster Energy Yamaha rout in qualifying for the MotoGP French Grand Prix on Saturday at the Le Mans Bugatti circuit.
Quartararo turned a lap of 1:32.600, edging teammate Maverick Viñales for the pole by .081 seconds.
“I think this was the qualifying [session] I was the most nervous for,” said Quartararo. “Not because it’s in France, but I was supposed to go out with a soft front and medium rear wet tire combination, and I never tried the medium. In mixed conditions we are bad, but I saw it was dry and said, ’It’s time for slicks.‘ And then on the last lap I was like, ’Okay, now is my time to send it and do my best. I either get front row or I crash.‘ There were some wet patches in the last sector. I was sideways everywhere, but we made it.
“The goal was front row, but pole position is even better.”
Ducati factory rider Jack Miller filled out the front row at 1:32.704, with Petronas Yamaha SRT’s Franco Morbidelli, Pramac Racing’s Johann Zarco and Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez making up row two of the starting grid.
Takaaki Nakagami, Pol Espargaro, Valentino Rossi and Miguel Oliveira closed the top 10. Defending MotoGP champion Joan Mir starts 14th.