Johann Zarco led the way in FP3 for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in a Ducati 1-2-3, though title contenders Fabio Quartararo and Francesco Bagnaia will have to contest Q1.
A wet Misano track once again greeted the 24 MotoGP competitors on Saturday morning, though grip levels looked to be in a better place relative to Friday as improvements came from a clutch of riders in the early stages of the session, Marc Marquez and Danilo Petrucci moving themselves into the overall top ten.
In what turned out to be a busy session, staying out on track and continuously building up speed and temperature in the tyres was the key, times relentlessly dropping across the 45-minute test.
It was Ducati that once again had the stranglehold at the head of the times though, with Friday leader Jack Miller and Zarco consistently posting top three times while Pramac rookie Jorge Martin would join them as the session reached its climax.
It would be Zarco that remained on top once the music stopped with a late 1:40.384s tour, though only 0.084s clear of team-mate Martin with Miller a little further back in third.
Miguel Oliveira was another to tame the conditions on his KTM, the three-time premier class winner at one point leading the way by a decent margin before eventually slipping to fourth ahead of Marquez, though a crash at Turn 16 wasn’t ideal.
Pol Espargaro joined his Honda team-mate in graduating directly to Saturday afternoon’s pole shootout thanks to a late improvement after languishing in the lower teens for the bulk of the weekend, brother Aleix also making it through to Q2 on his Aprilia behind in eighth just ahead of an impressive Franco Morbidelli for Yamaha.
Danilo Petrucci managed to wrangle his Tech 3 KTM through in conditions he excels with the ninth best time, with Luca Marini grabbing the final spot on his Avintia-run machine.
This meant several big names will have to head out in Q1 in order to try and salvage one of the final two berths to the pole shootout, with the headliners being only remaining championship hopefuls Quartararo and Bagnaia.
The former continued to struggle to make his M1 work in the tricky conditions, and ultimately failed to tame his bike like his team-mate as he fell all the way to 15th by the end-though Morbidelli’s strong effort led to Bagnaia surprisingly missing out.
Having looked decently competitive throughout, the Ducati racer was shuffled back towards the lower reaches of the top ten as the clock ticked down on the session, left with one final lap to secure himself within the top ten as several men improved behind.
He indeed did find more time on his last gambit, though it wasn’t enough as he moved from 12th to 11th, the Italian missing out by 0.136s.
Both Suzuki’s also will have to head out in Q1 with Joan Mir and Alex Rins managing the 12th and 21st best times respectively-the latter ace another to fall victim to Turn 16 early on-while Michele Pirro joined team-mate Bagnaia out in the cold after also going down at the same bend as Rins.
The other factory KTM of Brad Binder continued to suffer for one-lap speed in 16th just ahead of Maverick Vinales, while Enea Bastianini- who scored a rostrum at Misano only five weeks ago-could only grab the 18th best effort.