MotoGP 2021: Maverick Vinales claims pole position at Dutch MotoGP, Marc Marquez to begin in 20th position
Vinales' French teammate and championship leader Fabio Quartararo was second, at 0.071sec, with Ducati's Italian rider Francesco Bagnaia in third (+0.302).
MotoGP 2021: Maverick Vinales sets fastest time in Dutch MotoGP first practice as Marc Marquez crashes
Spaniard Vinales was fastest in both sessions, recording 1min 33.072sec in the dry morning conditions and then 1:33.241 on a rainy afternoon.
The six-time world champion, who returned this season after crashing in the opening race last year, escaped early and stayed clear of in-form Portuguese Miguel Oliveira and championship leader Fabio Quartararo.
Australian Jack Miller took third after championship leader Fabio Quartararo was hit with a three-second penalty for straying off the track a few laps from the end.
Miller, who won the last race in Spain, finished ahead of French pair Johann Zarco, riding for Ducati's satellite Pramac team, and Fabio Quartararo, on a Yamaha.
With intermittent rain making life difficult at the Bugatti circuit Quartararo topped the timesheets from his Yamaha teammate Maverick Vinales with Ducati's Jack Miller completing the front row.
MotoGP 2021: Marc Marquez escapes major injury after high-speed crash in Spanish GP practice, declared fit to continue
Marquez fell heavily in the third practice session at the circuit where last year he broke his right arm in the opening race to end his 2020 campaign.
Italian Francesco Bagnaia on a Ducati was second with Spanish world champion Joan Mir of Suzuki third.
Marquez has wasted no time getting back in the thick of things nine months after his crash in the Spanish Grand Prix which ruled him out of the entire 2020 season, and the first two races this year.
MotoGP: Returning after nine months, Marc Marquez finishes third fastest in free practice ahead of Portuguese GP
The Spaniard fared marginally less well in the second session but still produced the sixth fastest time overall to round off an exciting return, 271 days after his crash at the Spanish Grand Prix.
Marquez fractured his right arm when he fell in the first Grand Prix of last season, an injury that required three bouts of surgery, the last in December.
Marquez fractured his right arm on 19 July when he fell in the first Grand Prix of last season, an injury that required three bouts of surgery, the last in December.
Marquez, 27, had won the title four years in a row but has been sidelined since crashing out of the Spanish Grand Prix in Jerez on 19 July.
Championship leader Joan Mir, who like Espargaro has never won in the premier division, will start from the second row.
Teruel MotoGP: Franco Morbidelli wins after Takaaki Nakagami crash; Joan Mir stays in championship lead
Morbidelli crossed the finish line more than two seconds ahead of Álex Rins, with Joan Mir coming in third place after starting 12th.
Alex Rins sliced through the field after starting 10th on the grid. He became the 8th winner in this season's ten races after the vacuum created by the early season injury to reigning champion Marc Marquez.
Marc Marquez is the reigning MotoGP world champion. But he will not be able to make a bid at defending his title as he will be sidelined for another two to three months after fracturing his right arm in July's season opener.
Márquez needed a second surgery on Monday after re-injuring his arm at home. Honda team manager Alberto Puig said on Thursday that Márquez damaged a titanium plate in his right humerus while trying to open a window in his house.
MotoGP 2020: Reigning champ Marc Márquez returns to circuit after surgery but won't race at Andalucia GP
Márquez injured his arm last Sunday when he crashed near the end of the Spanish GP, the first race since the coronavirus pandemic
Márquez was hurt after crashing hard near the end of last Sunday's race in Jerez de la Frontera, which marked MotoGP's first grand prix since the coronavirus pandemic struck.