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Jun 14, 2019

MotoGP: Fabio Quartararo Close To Race Lap Record In FP2 At Catalunya (Updated)

Fabio Quartararo (20).

MotoGP Race Lap Record: Jorge Lorenzo, 1:40.021, 2018

MotoGP All Time Lap Record: Jorge Lorenzo, 1:38.680, 2018

2019 FIM MotoGP World Championship

Circuit de Barcelona - Catalunya, Spain

June 14, 2019

Free Practice Two Results (all on Michelin tires):

1. Fabio Quartararo, France (Yamaha), 1:40.079

2. Andrea Dovizioso, Italy (Ducati), 1:40.360

3. Takaaki Nakagami, Japan (Honda), 1:40.381

4. Pol Espargaro, Spain (KTM), 1:40.393

5. Francesco Bagnaia, Italy (Ducati), 1:40.471

6. Franco Morbidelli, Italy (Yamaha), 1:40.517

7. Valentino Rossi, Italy (Yamaha), 1:40.520

8. Danilo Petrucci, Italy (Ducati), 1:40.599

9. Cal Crutchlow, UK (Honda), 1:40.702

10. Alex Rins, Spain (Suzuki), 1:40.727

11. Karel Abraham, Czech Republic (Ducati), 1:40.727

12. Johann Zarco, France (KTM), 1:40.771

13. Jorge Lorenzo, Spain (Honda), 1:40.816

14. Maverick Vinales, Spain (Yamaha), 1:40.847

15. Aleix Espargaro, Spain (Aprilia), 1:40.878

16. Jack Miller, Australia (Ducati), 1:40.948

17. Marc Marquez, Spain (Honda), 1:40.963

18. Tito Rabat, Spain (Ducati), 1:41.007

19. Joan Mir, Spain (Suzuki), 1:41.070

20. Miguel Oliveira, Portugal (KTM), 1:41.331

21. Andrea Iannone, Italy (Aprilia), 1:41.524

22. Hafizh Syahrin, Malaysia (KTM), 1:41.527

23. Sylvain Guintoli, France (Suzuki), 1:41.987

24. Bradley Smith, UK (Aprilia), 1:42.156



More, from a press release issued by Red Bull KTM Tech3:

Decent opening for Red Bull KTM Tech3 duo in Barcelona

Miguel Oliveira and Hafizh Syahrin experienced an ok Friday at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya today. Both Red Bull KTM Tech3 riders did miss out on the top of the ultra-competitive MotoGP field by just 1.252 and 1.448 seconds, respectively.

While premier class rookie Oliveira immediately found a good feeling this morning and mastered to lower his lap time by 0.589 seconds from FP1 to FP2, Syahrin did an even bigger step to run 0.921 seconds quicker this afternoon. The Red Bull KTM Tech3 pair eagerly awaits Saturday at the Catalan track, starting with FP3 at 9.55 local time.

Miguel Oliveira

Position: 20th

Time: 1:41.331

Laps: 39

“This Friday the practices have been quite ok considering the time difference that we have to the front. But for sure we need more and we want more. Now I’m trying to improve the bike especially in the fast corners, which is where I’m struggling the most at the moment. I’m looking forward to tomorrow and keep working.”

Hafizh Syahrin

Position: 22nd

Time: 1:41.527

Laps: 36

“Overall I felt good during this first day. We are not so far from the top compared to the rest of the season until now. Although we still need to find something more, at least half a second. Yet, we still need to improve the traction, which I’m still missing. The bike is spinning quite a lot, but I believe we can solve this tomorrow morning. I can’t wait to try to do an even better lap time on Saturday.”



More, from a press release issued by PETRONAS Yamaha SRT:

Quartararo fastest as Catalan GP gets underway

Fabio Quartararo tops the timesheets in Friday practice, with team-mate Franco Morbidelli in sixth position.

1st FABIO QUARTARARO 1:40.079

6th FRANCO MORBIDELLI +0.438

PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team made a fantastic start to the Catalan GP weekend, with Fabio Quartararo setting the best time on the first day of practice in Barcelona - where he took his first Grand Prix win [in Moto2] last season - just one week on from an operation on his right forearm. Franco Morbidelli finished in a solid sixth place on the combined timesheets.

Quartararo was quick from the morning session onwards, clocking the second fastest time in FP1. The Frenchman showed good pace in his first two runs, eventually stopping the clock at 1min 40.803secs on his last lap. Morbidelli set his best time early in the morning session. The Italian took just five laps to put in his 1min 41.160secs time, briefly leading FP1. He spent the rest of the session working on his pace with used tyres and would take a final spot of eighth.

In the afternoon, the two PETRONAS Yamaha SRT riders were able to lower their times in FP2. Quartararo produced an amazing lap on his last run with a soft front and rear tyre, claiming the top spot with a 1min 40.079secs. Morbidelli also took a step forward in his last run of the session, finally claiming sixth position overall with his 1min 40.517secs lap.

Tomorrow, Quartararo and Morbidelli will participate in FP3 in the morning. Qualifying will take place at 2:10pm (Q1) and 2:35pm (Q2) local time.

#21 Franco Morbidelli

"It's been a good day for us. In the morning we found things a little harder, but we improved a lot in the afternoon. The grip level was not fantastic, so we suffered in that aspect, but our speed and pace were good, and I felt strong when going for a fast time. I finished sixth, which is not bad. We will have to see what the weather is like on Saturday, but so far I have a good feeling. Tomorrow morning will be different, because it will be colder. Speed is going to be the main aspect for us to improve, and then in the afternoon we'll have to see what our pace is like."

#20 Fabio Quartararo

"Today was a great day. We were first on the combined timesheets and I had a great feeling. I didn't know how my arm would react after my operation, but things went very well. I had some pain to deal with, but I feel good. The first run was hard, but after a while everything went better. It was a matter of getting used to the pain, but I didn't expect to go so well at this Grand Prix. We have to stay calm, which is the most important thing. We have a lot of work to do tomorrow morning and of course we will do our best to get onto the front row, but right now our goal is to be on the first three rows and go straight into Q2. We'll see if we can have a good qualifying." 



More, from a press release issued by Aprilia Racing Team Gresini:

GP OF CATALUNYA

BOTH ALEIX AND ANDREA IMPROVE BETWEEN THE TWO SESSIONS BUT MUST RECKON WITH THE LACK OF GRIP

The Spanish Montmelò confirms its status as a rigorous test bench in terms of grip. The lack of grip slowed the Aprilia riders who were both able to improve between the two sessions, but not enough for a provisional spot in the Q2 session.

Aleix made the top 10 in morning practice, ranking tenth with a best time of 1'41.213. In FP2, the hometown hero improved his performance, dropping all the way to 1'40.878. It was a time that earned him sixteenth place, less than 8 tenths behind the leader.

Andrea Iannone also managed to improve, but he did not benefit much from the new soft rear tyre he put on toward the end of FP2. Andrea and his team will be analysing this behaviour during the technical debriefing at the end of the day.

There was a lot of testing for Bradley Smith, Aprilia Racing tester participating in his third wild card of the season here in Barcelona. The English rider finished the first two sessions with a time of 1'42,156.

ALEIX ESPARGARO'

"On a track that I like very much, I expected more of this first day. I am unable to exploit the bike in acceleration and that compromises our performance coming out of turns. We are trying some new parts and I know Bradley’s testing schedule. Any improvements are welcome, but we need to make an important step forward."

ANDREA IANNONE

"Oddly enough, today I felt better with the medium tyre than with the soft. Toward the end of FP2, I put on the soft, thinking I would improve, but I ended up doing the same time as the used medium. We need to understand why this happened. In any case, we need to react and improve, especially in terms of the electronics."

BRADLEY SMITH

"Today was a rather intense day for me. We have a lot of things to test, from the electronics to the chassis, and I hope that the information gathered today can help Aleix and Andrea. I also tried the hard tyre, just to increase the amount of data available to the team. Track conditions were rather difficult, especially in the afternoon. I expect some improvement in FP3, also having fewer details to assess, but the real job will come in FP4, which will be held in conditions similar to the race on Sunday."



More, from a press release issued by Pramac Racing:

#CatalanGP FP. Pecco starts well and finishes in Top 5. Jack is very strong in FP2 even without trying the time attack.

The numbers of the Monster Energy de Catalunya Grand Prix FP2 are really surprising with the top 5 riders in just 3 tenths of a second and the top 19 in less than second. Francesco Bagnaia is the protagonist of a great time attack and is fifth after the first day of free practice. Jack Miller starts out great but the used tyres in the FP2s don't allow him to enter the Top 10.

FP1 (Practice condition: Dry. Air 23rd. Ground 24th)

P6 Jack Miller (1'41.049, +0.357 from P1)

Jack gets off to a good start in Barcelona. The Australian rider laps consistently and finishes the first session (with used tires) 3 tenths of a second from Marc Marquez - one of the few to have used the soft tire.

P15 Francesco Bagnaia (1'41.530, +0.317 from Top 10, +0.838 from P1)

Pecco works on the set up without looking for the fastest lap. The Italian rider ends 19 laps with a laptime very close to the Top 10.

FP2 (Practice condition: Dry. Air 26°. Ground 42°)

P5 Francesco Bagnaia (1'40.471, +0.392 from P1)

Pecco manages to set a great time attack in the second half of the session after having encountered some difficulties in the early laps.

P16 Jack Miller (1'40.948, +0.221 from Top 10, +0.869 from P1)

Jack's final laptime is not indicative. Miller enters the track with the soft tires and immediately sets the best laptime. In the final time attack he uses the same tyres that do not allow him to be incisive and finishes P16 ahead of Marc Marquez.

P5 – Pecco Bagnaia

"I am satisfied with the final laptime but in the first part of the FP2 the feeling was not good. Then we put the soft tires at both the front and the rear and the bike was back to being very performing. Tomorrow we will also work on how to make better use of the tires".

P16 – Jack Miller

"Generally a positive day. The feeling with the bike is very good even though in the second part of the FP2 the soft tires I used didn't allow me to push. We collected some important data for the race. There is still a lot of confidence for tomorrow's qualifying".



More, from a press release issued by Repsol Honda:

Repsol Honda Team on pace in tight Catalan GP practice

Making the most of track time, Marc Marquez and Jorge Lorenzo are pleased with the work done as the opening day of Catalan GP practice came to a close.

Despite a brief spitting of rain in the afternoon, both Repsol Honda Team riders were able to gather good amounts of information and data at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Conditions remained steady throughout the day, the track peaking at 42°C and the air temperature hardly changing from 26°C.

Starting the day immediately on the pace, Marc Marquez continued to improve his feeling on the Repsol Honda Team RC213V throughout Free Practice 1 and ended the session fastest with a 1’40.692. Unable to improve this time in Free Practice 2, Marquez heads into Saturday as the ninth fastest rider overall.

Jorge Lorenzo used the track time to assess new ergonomics for his Honda RC213V. Improving by 0.8s, Lorenzo ended Friday practice with a 1’40.816 for 14th overall. Despite the position, Lorenzo is just 0.737s shy of Quartararo’s fastest time as only 0.5s separated the top five riders.

Takaaki Nakagami finished as the top Honda rider, third aboard the LCR Honda.

Saturday, June 15, begins with Free Practice 3 at 09:55 local time – a last chance for riders to set a top-ten time and advance directly to Q2. Qualifying for the premier class commences at 14:10.

Marc Marquez

9TH 1'40.692

“Not a bad day today. We had to change our strategy from the last GP a little bit because it’s important to understand the tyres. If you check the FP2 times, we look like we are far but we were able to do a lot of work and try many tyres and some setup changes. We’re not bad and the position isn’t our real one. I’m happy with all the information that we were able to get.”

Jorge Lorenzo

14TH 1'40.816

“The track was not in the best condition today and it was very slippery, the lap times were not as fast as they could have been I think. I did not use a new soft tyre like many other riders in FP2 as I think we will be able to profit more tomorrow. Today we were able to try some new parts and hopefully it will help us close the gap to the front more.”



More, from a press release issued by LCR Honda Idemitsu:

NAKAGAMI EMERGES AS FASTEST HONDA AT MONTMELO

Takaaki Nakagami picked up where he left off at Mugello as free practice for the Catalunya Grand Prix got underway on Friday. The LCR Honda IDEMITSU rider claimed his best-ever MotoGP result in Italy last time out (fifth place) and was back amongst the pacesetters at Montmelo as he finished the day in third position, ending as the fastest Honda rider in the class.

In what is almost a second home race for him, Barcelona-based Nakagami served notice of his speed in FP1 as he posted the fifth quickest time. Despite a dirty track complicating matters, Taka made light of grip issues to improve once again in FP2 to take third spot and is now full of confidence heading into qualifying on Saturday.

Takaaki Nakagami – 3rd

(1’40.381 – lap 20 of 21)

“Of course, I’m very happy about today, the feeling on the bike is quite good. But I think everyone struggled today, from FP1 to FP2, to find good grip compared to last year. As you can see last year in FP2, already some riders were in 38 and many were in 39, but today nobody was able to go into 39. Many people were 1 minute 40, but I think everybody struggled to find grip. We did quite well though and to finish as the top Honda is really important. This has given me extra motivation but let’s see how tomorrow goes, everybody will be looking to improve. We can still improve the feeling (with the bike) a lot, so we’ll try to do an even better performance tomorrow.”



More, from a press release issued by LCR Honda Castrol:

CRUTCHLOW HOPING FOR MORE AT MONTMELO

Cal Crutchlow admits he is looking for improvement after a demanding opening day of free practice for the Catalunya Grand Prix on Friday. Round seven of the MotoGP World Championship calendar got underway in sunny conditions in Barcelona, although a dirty track at the Montmelo circuit made life tough for the riders.

Crutchlow had to settle for 11th position in the morning’s FP1 session, but did improve to end the day within the top 10 as he claimed ninth spot in FP2. However, the Briton remained far from satisfied and is hoping he and his team can make a big leap as they look to improve the set-up of his RC213V ahead of Saturday’s qualifying.

Cal Crutchlow – 9th

(1’40.702 – lap 18 of 19)

“It was not a great day as per usual at the moment, we’ll have to try and improve for tomorrow. Unfortunately, I can’t turn the bike as I want and don’t feel good on it, especially in fast corners. I’m struggling in that area and losing time. I know the speed and what pace I had here at the end of the race last year, the bike setting is identical to last year, but we have a different chassis and it’s not still working as I wish”.



More, from a press release issued by Mission Winnow Ducati:

Dovizioso second in Friday's free practice at Circuit de Catalunya, Petrucci in eighth position

The Mission Winnow Ducati team resumed track activity today at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in Montmeló (Spain), home of the seventh round of the 2019 MotoGP World Championship, for the opening day of free practice ahead of Sunday's race. Mild weather conditions – with approximately 25 degrees in the atmosphere and 40 on the tarmac – characterized Friday's sessions, during which Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci worked on the race setup, seizing second (+0.281) and eighth (+0.520) position respectively in the provisional time sheets, where the top 19 riders sit within less than one second.

After posting the fourth-fastest time in the morning, Dovizioso improved his lap time by circa seven tenths of a second in FP2 to finish in 1:40.360. Petrucci also made strides despite some issues under braking, taking more than a second off his best time in the afternoon to post a 1:40.599, about two tenths of a second behind his teammate.

Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Mission Winnow Ducati) – 1:40.360 (2nd)

"I'm satisfied with our performance in this first day of practice, I had a good feeling with the bike and we've been fast. As it often happened here in the past, grip is very low and the track's layout makes tyre management particularly difficult, especially considering the higher temperatures forecast for the rest of the weekend. However, I believe everyone is struggling under this aspect. We have work left to do ahead of the race: we're still evaluating the different tyre compounds available and we need to improve the front-end feeling, but my sensations are good and so are the lap times, so I'm confident."

Danilo Petrucci (#9 Mission Winnow Ducati) – 1:40.599 (8th)

"My feeling on the bike is quite good, even though this morning we encountered an atypical issue with rear grip, which slowed our program down a little bit. In FP2 we made a big step forward, even though there is still room for improvement. We're not far from the front in terms of pace, while we're still not at our best on the flying lap because I struggle in corner entry as I feel little support from the rear. We have clear ideas about what changes to make on the bike and we defined our work program for tomorrow, so I'm optimistic."

The Mission Winnow Ducati team will resume action tomorrow, June 15th, at 09:55 (CET) for the third free-practice session, while qualifying will start at 14:10 shortly after FP4.



More, from a press release issued by Monster Energy Yamaha:

 MONSTER ENERGY YAMAHA MOTOGP PREPARE TO BATTLE IN BARCELONA

Barcelona (Spain), 14th June 2019

GRAND PRIX OF CATALUNYA

FREE PRACTICE

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP's Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales got the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya weekend underway, taking seventh and fifteenth place respectively in the combined standings.

7th VALENTINO ROSSI 1'40.520 (FP2) / 20 + 21 LAPS

15th MAVERICK VIÑALES 1'40.847 / 22 + 18 LAPS

The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team started work at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya today, in preparation for Sunday‘s Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya. Working on various setting and tyre options, Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales took seventh and fifteenth place respectively in the combined rankings.

Rossi needed some time to get up to speed in the morning session, using most of the available 45 minutes working on the balance of the bike. After getting a feel for the track conditions and bike behaviour in his first two runs, he sped up towards the end. He finished FP1 in ninth place with a 1‘41.190s, 0.498s from first.

The temperatures went up to 26°C in the afternoon, setting the scene for a hot paced FP2. The Italian was fast to position his YZR-M1 in second place, but the times of the rider field dropped early on in the session, moving Rossi to thirteenth position. The Doctor worked on his bike's setting before responding, delivering multiple fast laps in the last ten minutes. His final attempt, a 1‘40.520s, earned him seventh position in the FP2 and combined free practice results, 0.441s from first.

Viñales was eager to make a good impression on his home fans this weekend and was quick to get to work this morning. Despite the somewhat slippery track conditions, he soon found a solid base set-up and race pace and continued to improve his time. He ultimately scored third place with a best lap of 1‘40.872s, 0.180s from first.

In the afternoon the local hero focused on comparing various tyre specs and setting combinations for almost the entire duration of FP2, until switching to the soft-soft tyre option in the final five minutes. His last and only hot lap, a 1‘40.847s, briefly put him in 12th place in the rankings. However, as some late flying laps came in, he was pushed back to 14th place in the FP2 standings and 15th place in the combined timesheets, 0.768s from the top.

MASSIMO MEREGALLI

TEAM DIRECTOR

"We've had a mixed first day in Barcelona. Valentino worked quite strategically on the bike setting in the morning and reaped the fruits of his labour in the afternoon. He's feeling comfortable on the bike, though we still have areas that we want to work on tomorrow. Maverick was strong in the morning session but didn't quite have the same feeling in the afternoon. He made some amendments and because of that he had only time for one flying lap. Had he been able to get another lap in on the soft-soft at the end of the session, he probably would have finished higher. Tomorrow, in FP3, we must have both riders in the top-10, and the cooler track conditions should play into our favour. In FP4, we'll dedicate the available time in the hotter conditions to preparing the race set-up and we also have to work on the tyres, as we weren't able to test all the specifications yet."

VALENTINO ROSSI

"The track is good, I like it a lot and, sincerely, today was a positive day for us, because I felt good with the bike and could ride quite well. My pace is not so bad, and I was able to stay inside the top-10 in the morning and in the afternoon. In FP2 it was already hot, but I didn't feel so bad. It's true that it wasn't very, very hot, so we'll have to see. The first thing is that we'll try to improve tomorrow, we still have a lot of work to do. Today we worked well and in the afternoon we were able to improve the bike. The most important thing is to stay inside the top-10 tomorrow morning so we can get into Q2, and after that we'll see what happens in the afternoon in qualifying."

MAVERICK VIÑALES

"The morning was actually quite good, we worked a lot for the race. It seems that the morning was a little bit easier than the afternoon when I struggled more in all areas. We tried many things for the race set-up, but it didn't help us make the step we thought we would make. However, we still have FP3 to get into Q2, so we are quite calm about it, we can do good lap times. This afternoon we were working really hard for the race, but we're going to try a different direction in FP4 to see if we can make another step for Sunday. In FP3 we're going to concentrate on being fast on one lap and getting into Q2. We need to keep working and pushing."



More, from a press release issued by Dorna/www.motogp.com:

Fresh faces vs veterans: Quartararo heads a four-factory fight on Friday

French rookie continues his roll, with Yamaha, Ducati, Honda and KTM locked in combat at the top

Friday, 14 June 2019

They say you can't keep a good man down and on Friday at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya that proved very true for rookie sensation Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) as the Frenchman came straight out the blocks from arm pump surgery to lead the way. Quick in FP1 and his fastest in FP2 enough to take over at the top, he ends Friday clear of the competition by almost three tenths. That competition made it an impressive four factories in the top four, however, with Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) in P2, Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu) in third and Pol Espargaro (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) in fourth – with all three within 0.033 on the chase.

The morning session was a fairly quiet one by MotoGP™ standards, with a bit of a hairy entrance into Turn 10 for Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) and a little snap at the same place for Marquez two of the stand outs. But it would nevertheless prove a crucial session for the reigning Champion as he was the only rider in the top ten who didn't improve his laptime in the afternoon. He didn't fit a new soft tyre but was able to stay in ninth, so the 'extra' tyre on Saturday could prove a masterstroke.

Marquez also ran with the Ducatis in the afternoon – much to their mild chagrin – as Dovizioso and teammate Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati) had headed out in tandem. They kept the advantage on the combined timesheets though, with 'DesmoDovi' in second and 'Petrux' taking P8, just ahead of the number 93.

So behind the four-factory fight at the top and those standout performances from the likes of Nakagami and Pol Espargaro, who impressed next? Second rookie Francesco Bagnaia (Pramac Racing) put his Ducati in fifth and would doubtless have been the rookie talking point of the day if not for the Frenchman at the top, and Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) took P6 to again make it both the Independent Team Yamahas ahead of the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP bikes. It wasn't by much at Catalunya, however, with Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) an infinitesimal 0.003 behind compatriot and VR46 Riders Academy member Morbidelli. After a tougher run of late, especially on Friday and Saturday, it was a big step forward for the 'Doctor' at a venue he's reigned more than anyone.

Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol), meanwhile, completes the top ten to slot in behind Petrucci and Marquez. The Brit was only 0.010 behind Marquez, too, with those two Hondas trailing Nakagami's best lap by a couple of tenths. But then the number 93, as aforementioned, didn't pop in a fresh soft tyre. And neither did Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar), who finishes Friday in P11 and therefore outside the automatic graduation zone to Q2. The Suzuki rider also suffered a crash, but the weather forecast is fine for the weekend and Saturday is another day, so both he and Marquez will be gunning for a hot lap in FP3.

The likes of Jorge Lorenzo (Repsol Honda Team) in P14 and Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) in P15 will be rushing to join them too, with Viñales one who, along with Jack Miller, dropped down the timesheets in the afternoon.

See how the cards play out in FP3 as it decides those heading straight through to Q2 at 9:55 (GMT +2) before qualifying begins at 14:10 and the grid for Round 7 is decided.

Lüthi leads a tight tussle for supremacy on Friday

Championship contender heads fellow threats Marquez and Navarro with the top three covered by just 0.067

FP1 pacesetter Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP) kept Moto2™ Day 1 honours at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya after his 1:44.673 went unbeaten in the afternoon, with Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and HDR Heidrun Speed Up’s Jorge Navarro completing the top three and just 0.067 between them. The afternoon's quickest man was Augusto Fernandez (FlexBox HP 40) and he took P4 overall as one of only three men in the top ten to go faster in FP2.

Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) continued his impressive season in fifth, with the rookie just 0.068 off Fernandez on Friday and ahead of veteran Xavi Vierge (EG 0,0 Marc VDS). Second rookie honours went to Nicolo Bulega (Sky Racing Team VR46), with the Italian taking P7 as well as putting in a miracle save in the afternoon.

Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) took P8 despite a crash in the afternoon, with Championship leader Lorenzo Baldassarri (Flexbox HP 40) down in ninth. He, along with tenth-placed Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46), joined Fernandez in the afternoon improvers' club. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) was P11, ahead of rookie Fabio Di Giannantonio (HDR Heidrun Speed Up), Andrea Locatelli (Italtrans Racing Team) and Simone Corsi (Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2).

There were a few key incidents on Friday, one of which was a crash for Navarro as he lost the front at Turn 5, and an off for 15th quickest Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP), who's left as the first of those needing to improve in FP3 to head straight through to Q2. Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) and Philipp Öttl (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) also crashed.

The intermediate class will be back out on track for FP3 from 10:55 (GMT +2) on Saturday, with Q1 qualifying starting to decide the grid from 15:05.

Lopez throws down the gauntlet on Day 1

Home hero leads an Estrella Galicia 0,0 1-2 on Friday, with Dalla Porta hot on their heels

Alonso Lopez led rookie teammate Sergio Garcia to an Estrella Galicia 0,0 1-2 on Day 1 at the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya, with the two Spaniards having topped FP1 and no one able to overturn them in the afternoon. FP2's quickest man was Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing), and he slots into third on the combined timesheets as he chases the Championship lead this weekend.

Brief spots of rain affected FP2 but the weather was largely fine on Friday, although conditions didn't see everyone improve in the latter session. So it's a mix of FP1 and FP2 best efforts that decides the Friday combined timesheets, with the top three followed by Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) from his FP1 time and Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse) from his FP2 time.

Next up it was a solid opening day for Darryn Binder (CIP - Green Power) in sixth, ahead of rookie Can Öncü (Red Bull KTM Ajo) in a much improved performance for the Turk. Romano Fenati (VNE Snipers) was P8, with Albert Arenas (Sama Qatar Angel Nieto Team) and Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) completing the top ten.

Kaito Toba (Honda Team Asia), Kazuki Masaki (BOE Skull Rider Mugen Race), Marcos Ramirez (Leopard Racing) and Makar Yurchenko (BOE Skull Rider Mugen Race) complete the fastest fourteen, denying Jaume Masia (Bester Capital Dubai) and John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) provisional graduation to Q2.

Lopez was one crasher, down in FP2, and Toba and Dennis Foggia (Sky Racing Team VR46) suffered falls in the morning.

The fastest 14 on the combined timesheets after FP3 go straight through to Qualifying 2. Tune in to see how it shuffles on Saturday morning from 9:00 (GMT +2), before qualifying begins from 12:35.

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