Espargaró goes fastest in Assen first free practice

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Thursday, 28 June 2012

In the first Moto2™ free practice at the Iveco TT Assen it was Pons 40 HP Tuenti’s Pol Espargaró who went quickest ahead of Andrea Iannone and Esteve Rabat.

Under sunny skies at the Dutch circuit, last race winner Espargaró was once again the pace setter as he clocked the best time of the day with a 1.38’571, narrowly ousting Speed Master’s Iannone into second by just over a tenth. Almost seven tenths further back was Espargaró’s teammate Rabat, finishing in front of Interwetten-Paddock’s Tom Lüthi in fourth.

Italtrans Racing Team’s Claudio Corti set the fifth fastest time of the morning, before crashing out with seven minutes left on the clock. He was ahead of Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol’s Marc Márquez, who was almost nine tenths off the top. In seventh, Marc VDS Racing Team’s Scott Redding will be looking for a repeat of his home race performance last time out where he finished second.

One of the big changes on the Moto2 grid was the NGM Mobile Forward Racing Team’s switch from a Suter to an FTR chassis. Alex de Angelis, who had tested the chassis in pre-season, looked comfortable from the off, as he posted the eighth quickest time, still within a second of Espargaró. Came IodaRacing Project’s Simone Corsi, who has been the most successful FTR rider in Moto2 this season, was fractionally behind in ninth. Mapfre Aspar Team’s Toni Elías completed the top ten.

As well as Corti’s crash, Kiefer Racing’s Max Neukirchner slid off track with 27 minutes left, while Thai Honda PTT Gresini Moto2’s Ratthapark Wilairot also crashed out with seven minutes to go. All crashers walked away unscathed.

There was also a new addition to the grid for the Desguaces La Torre SAG Team in the form of Australian rider Damian Cudlin. Cudlin, who will ride the next two rounds, replaces Angel Rodriguez, with whom the team split after the Silverstone round.

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