Takaaki Nakagami fastest in the opening practice of Italian MotoGP

Takaaki Nakagami fastest in the opening practice of Italian MotoGP

Takaaki Nakagami dominated the first practice session of the Italian Grand Prix weekend at Mugello after putting in a strong late effort on used medium tyres.

Throughout the 45-minute test, the LCR Honda rider was at the front of the pack, sitting just fractions behind joint leaders Aleix Espargaro and Francesco Bagnaia before the Japanese ace took the lead with a time just 0.030s faster than the two.

Not willing to rest on his laurels, Nakagami clocked a 1:46.662s tour in the final minutes to extend his lead to nearly four tenths of a second, a time made all the more intriguing by the fact that it was set on used medium rubber.

Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro finished second, ahead of Bagnaia, with Suzuki’s Alex Rins and Gresini Ducati’s Enea Bastianini rounding out the top five.

Espargaro’s teammate at Aprilia, Maverick Vinales finished sixth overall, ahead of Jack Miller of sister factory Ducati, with Honda’s Pol Espargaro in eighth place.

Johann Zarco finished ninth on his newly-branded Pramac Ducati after the team signed a championship sponsorship contract with Italian insurance giant Prima, providing a splash of purple to Pramac’s customary white and red livery. Meanwhile Luca Marini completed the top 10 on his VR46-run Ducati.

Fabio Quartararo, the series leader, finished 11th after testing Yamaha’s new aero solution for the first time, with the Japanese manufacturer seeking for a little extra straight-line speed down Mugello’s massive main stretch.

Michele Pirro, the Ducati test rider, was 12th fastest in his first start of 2022, while Joan Mir, the 2020 MotoGP world champion, finished 15th on the other Suzuki GSX-RR.

As troubles continued to plague KTM, Brad Binder was the highest-classified RC16 in 17th slightly ahead of teammate Miguel Oliviera, who escaped a harrowing run through the grass on the run to Turn 1 early on after seemingly being caught out by Espargaro’s Aprilia’s aerowash effect.

Marc Marquez finished 19th overall on his factory-run Honda, with Andrea Dovizioso 21st overall on the first of the RNF Yamahas, ahead of Lorenzo Savadori, who wore an unusual rear flap on the back of his Aprilia in an attempt to get the RS-GP over the hump on the run to Turn 1.


1Takaaki NakagamiJPNLCR Honda (RC213V)1’46.662s18/19347k
2Aleix EspargaroSPAAprilia Racing (RS-GP)+0.408s12/18353k
3Francesco BagnaiaITADucati Lenovo (GP22)+0.408s8/16350k
4Alex RinsSPASuzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)+0.409s10/20352k
5Enea BastianiniITAGresini Ducati (GP21)+0.524s13/17355k
6Maverick ViñalesSPAAprilia Racing (RS-GP)+0.529s15/18352k
7Jack MillerAUSDucati Lenovo (GP22)+0.653s18/20351k
8Pol EspargaroSPARepsol Honda (RC213V)+0.705s17/19350k
9Johann ZarcoFRAPramac Ducati (GP22)+0.705s15/21354k
10Luca MariniITAMooney VR46 Ducati (GP22)+0.721s16/19350k
11Fabio QuartararoFRAMonster Yamaha (YZR-M1)+0.731s9/21348k
12Michele PirroITADucati Test Rider (GP22)+0.770s4/16348k
13Alex MarquezSPALCR Honda (RC213V)+0.900s17/20356k
14Marco BezzecchiITAMooney VR46 Ducati (GP21)*+0.922s9/19351k
15Joan MirSPASuzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)+0.996s10/20348k
16Franco MorbidelliITAMonster Yamaha (YZR-M1)+1.065s5/20345k
17Brad BinderRSARed Bull KTM (RC16)+1.084s20/20352k
18Miguel OliveiraPORRed Bull KTM (RC16)+1.158s6/20350k
19Marc MarquezSPARepsol Honda (RC213V)+1.213s5/17345k
20Jorge MartinSPAPramac Ducati (GP22)+1.241s16/17352k
21Andrea DoviziosoITAWithU Yamaha RNF (YZR-M1)+1.416s10/18348k
22Lorenzo SavadoriITAAprilia Racing (RS-GP)+1.591s5/18352k
23Fabio Di GiannantonioITAGresini Ducati (GP21)*+1.673s7/17348k
24Darryn BinderRSAWithU Yamaha RNF (YZR-M1)*+2.248s18/18354k
25Raul FernandezSPAKTM Tech3 (RC16)*+2.249s12/18346k
26Remy GardnerAUSKTM Tech3 (RC16)*+2.298s7/16345k

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