The MotoGP™ FP2 session at Motegi saw Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) set the standard on the first day of the Motul Grand Prix of Japan, with Jorge Lorenzo and Stefan Bradl also amongst the leading trio.
On an extra soft rear tyre Dovizioso set the best time of the day towards the end of FP2 with a 1’45.140 lap of the Japanese circuit, which put him 0.440s ahead of the second best rider Lorenzo.
In FP1 Lorenzo led the way and although he improved in the afternoon he could not patch the pace of Dovizioso, with the Italian taking full advantage of the softer rubber. Third in FP2 was Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP) with a similar time to Lorenzo’s, 0.497s adrift of P1.
Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) survived a big moment in FP1 when he produced a remarkable stoppie at turn 11, as he hit the brakes going into the corner. He ended the day fourth best, just in front of Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP).
The overall Friday top ten was completed by Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing)
Marquez was unhurt in a crash early in FP1 as he could not brake in time at turn 5, meaning his title shot weekend got off to a tricky start. He will look to move up the timesheets on Saturday.
Local rider Hiroshi Aoyama (Drive M7 Aspar) suffered a crash in the final minutes of the FP2 session, able to walk away with minimal damage to the bike. Hector Barbera (Avintia Racing) also suffered a small off, but was able to remount and return to the pits. Both riders were unhurt.