Bike Racing

MotoGP Free Practice: Cal Crutchlow took the spoils on day 1 at Jerez as the top 15 are covered by just 1 second

Featured Image Credit: event gallery

Cal Crutchlow takes the spoils on the opening day but the rest are not far behind him with just 1 second covering the top 15.

The first day of the European MotoGP season did not disappoint with FP1 kicking off this morning. All the teams had tested at Jerez after the new resurfacing except the Movistar Yamaha duo of Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales, which meant they had a little bit of catching up to do in FP1. Rossi ended FP1 in P6 just over 2 tenths down on Dovizioso. Maverick finished FP1 in P9 again just over 2 tenths down. FP2 saw Rossi fall to 9th and Vinales to 12th putting both Yamaha’s in the danger zone for Q2.

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KTM have 3 riders this weekend, with test rider Mika Kallio joining full time riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro for this weekends Spanish Grand Prix, Kallio has been testing KTM’s 2019 prototype with Pol Espargaro stating that he “almost couldn’t follow” Mika Kallio although Pol had managed to impressively muscle his Factory KTM to P3 in FP1 just +0.043 off Dovizioso who topped FP1.

The predicted bad weather stayed away for FP2 with the glorious sunshine still beating down on the Spainish circuit, Jorge Lorenzo who famously loves the Jerez circuit continued his struggles today with him visibly looking frustrated throughout FP1 when he was in his pit box, he managed to finish FP2 in P7 +0.462 behind Argentina winner Cal Crutchlow.

With speculation currently surrounding Andrea Iannone’s future the Italian done all his talking on track with P4 at the end of the day and consistently in the top 5 region, again looking like he could mount a podium challenge on Sunday.

Suzuki team mate Alex Rins finished FP1 in P18 however he seemed to be the only factory rider to try Michelins hard yellow banded rear tyre. FP2 Rins managed to bump up to P13 but has work to do to get straight into Q2 for tomorrows qualifying.

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Repsol Honda pair had a solid start both ending the day on the pace and of course whats a Friday Practice session with out a Marquez save with the reigning champ saving another one on his now famous elbows into turn 1 in the opening practice session. Dani ended the day P2 just +0.007 behind fellow Honda rider Cal Cruchlow.

Argentina pole man Jack Miller showed another excellent day end FP2 in 8th continuing to show just how well he is getting on with his Alma Pramac Ducati, Danilo Putrucci again looks like he is struggling with his Factory GP18 finishing the day in 16th giving the Italian a lot of work to do in the morning in FP3.

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FP3 is going to be a important session for a lot of riders tomorrow with some riders looking seemingly out of place, Factory Yamaha duo are very much in the danger zone in P9 and P12 with only the top 10 from combined practice times going straight through to Q2 a few people inside the Yamaha box may be doing a rain dance tomorrow to keep both bikes in the top 10 with the likes of Rins, P. Espargaro, Kallio, Petrucci and Rabat all capable of knocking a few people out of the top 10 in FP3.

Sessions results can be found here.

Featured Image Credit: events gallery.

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