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Marquez leads muddled first Mugello practice

Marquez leads muddled first Mugello practice

Repsol Honda Team’s Marc Marquez set the pace in a mixed-up opening practice period for the Gran Premio d’Italia TIM. With tricky conditions at Mugello, there were numerous changes in the running order as the Spaniard eventually led Ducati Test Team’s Michele Pirro and LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl.

The action got underway shortly before ten o’clock on Friday morning, with Italian Andrea Iannone being the first to run off the circuit. Marquez, Valentino Rossi, Andrea Dovizioso and both Came IodaRacing Project riders would also endure either small crashes or off-track excursions over the course of the 45 minutes.

Marquez set the pace with his best lap time of 1’54.797, escaping a Materassi corner slip-up at the end of the session to lead Pirro (on the Ducati GP13 Lab bike) by just under four tenths of a second. Behind Bradl, Karel Abraham and Yonny Hernandez were unfamiliar top five finishers for Cardion AB Motoracing and PBM respectively, ahead of Bradley Smith on the leading Monster Yamaha Tech 3 machine.

Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden was seventh from Marquez’s teammate and championship leader Dani Pedrosa, as Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow and the returning Ben Spies for Ignite Pramac Racing rounded out the top ten. Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi ended up only 14th and 19th for Yamaha Factory Racing, meaning they must climb up to the top ten before the end of third practice in order to progress directly to Q2 Qualifying on Saturday.

After the session, Andrea Dovizioso was taken to the circuit Medical Centre for an x-ray on his cervical spine, with results being confirmed as negative. His taking part in the second session will depend on the level of pain the Italian is suffering.

Second Free Practice begins at 2:05pm local time (GMT +2).


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