Antonelli sets incredible pace on the opening day

The Italian leads Martin and Di Giannantonio on the combined Free Practice timesheets

Niccolò Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) set a blistering pace on Friday afternoon at the Gran Premio Red Bull de España, improving his time by two seconds from FP1 to be the only rider to venture into the 1.46’s and go fastest overall. Championship leader Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) was his closest challenger, however he could only get within 0.444 seconds of the Italian. Martin’s teammate Fabio Di Giannantonio rounded out the top three – the only rider in the top 12 to not improve his FP1 time.

Enea Bastianini (Leopard Racing) was third in the afternoon session, his 1:47.165 was enough to put him fourth on the overall times – 0.006 behind Di Giannantonio. Last year’s Jerez race winner Aron Canet (Estrella Galicia 0,0) improved on his FP1 time right at the end of his final FP2 run, ending the day P5 and 0.594 off Antonelli’s pace. Honda Team Asia rider Kaito Toba improved his time by nearly a second from FP1 to impress in P6.

Marcos Ramirez (Bester Capital Dubai) has found some form in Jerez so far this weekend, building on his solid FP1 display to finish seventh overall, with Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) in eighth. Tony Arbonlino (Marinelli Snipers Team), who led FP2 in the early stages of the session, was 0.009 seconds back from Dalla Porta in ninth, with John McPhee (CIP – Green Power) improving by over a second in the afternoon to end Friday in P10 on board his KTM machine.

Top rookie was last years Red Bull Rookies Cup Champion Kazuki Masaki (RBA BOE Skull Rider), who finished in a solid P15. 

Antonelli looks like an early candidate for pole position, can the chasing pack close the gap in FP3? Find out when the Moto3™ riders head back out on Saturday, 09:00 local time (GMT +2).

For the full results, click here