Aleix Espargaro Fastest in Practice on Day 1 of Catalan GP

September 1, 2023Ray Milton

Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing) topped practice ahead of teammate Maverick Viñales (Aprilia Racing). The pair were separated by 0.362 seconds. Viñales finished just 0.013 seconds ahead of championship leader Francesco Bagnaia. Johann Zarco (Prima Pramac Racing) and Brand Binder (KTM) rounded out the top five. Espargaro broke the lap record during the session setting a 1m38.686s.

Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo) started practice off with grip issues and fell back in the pecking order to P20. After making some changes Bagnaia was able to improve to third but questions are looming as to if the Ducati will be able to bounce back from an issue in qualifying with less time to make adjustments. Bagnaia currently holds a 62 point lead in the championship. A win this weekend is imperative with Jorge Martin (Prima Pramac Racing) and Marco Bezzecchi (Mooney VR46 Racing) knocking on the door.

After crashing in FP1 Marc Marquez finished the session main practice. Marquez complained of an issue with his thumb but it did not eliminate from the practice session. It was a very poor practice session for the Japanese manufacturers. The Yamaha and Honda teams finished at the very bottom of the table filling the last 6 positions. Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha) finished P17 the leader of the bottom six.

Full Catalan GP Practice Results are Below