After a rain shower shortened track time for the lightweight class, sun greeted the premier class but with track conditions still requiring rain tyres there were few takers early on. With the likes of Joan Mir and Fabio Quartararo out of the provisional top 10, they were particularly keen to see the conditions improved and the Frenchman was the first to be tempted by slick tyres 15 minutes into the session, quickly followed by the Spaniard. Some more rivals joined the party soon after and were steadily drawing nearer to Friday’s benchmark but it wasn’t until the final 13 minutes that the combined top 10 saw any changes, with Franco Morbidelli proving that there was enough time to be found on track. Morbidelli continued with a sensational pace and went fastest overall by almost half a second.
Behind the Italian, Pol Espargaro was second best on Saturday morning, while Johann Zarco joined the top three closely behind the Spaniard. Maverick Vinales also found some speed to head into Q2 in a more comfortable position in fourth, while Mir had to wait until his final flying lap to find his way into the top 5 of the session and into Q2 worthy places. Takaaki Nakagami in sixth place was one of the few men who did not improve on their Friday times but did not need to as the Honda man was safely inside the combined top 10. Jack Miller and Pecco Bagnaia were the other two men who relied on Friday times to sneak into Q2 despite missing out on the top 10 of the session. Two of the big winners of FP3 were Miguel Oliveira and Aleix Espargaro, who secured the final Q2 tickets after finishing 7th and 8th in the session.
With Mir saving his day at the last minute, his two main rivals dropped out of direct Q2 positions in the closing stages of FP3, Quartararo missing out by only two thousandths of a second, while Alex Rins was only fast enough for 15th overall. Andrea Dovizioso did not set a time until the final handful of minutes and failed to go any faster than on Friday, which left him down in 13th overall.
Meanwhile, Iker Lecuona’s return to action didn’t work out as planned, with the Spaniard testing positive for Covid-19 and likely to miss the season finale as well.