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SKY Racing Team VR46’s Luca Marini closed the opening day of the Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley as the man to beat in Moto2™ after following on from leading FP1 by taking top spot in FP2. The young Italian went another half a second quicker but was put under more pressure than this morning.
The 21-year-old’s lap of 1:51.986 meant he finished just 0.008 of a second ahead of Dynavolt Intact GP’s Tom Lüthi, who found just under a second from his lap in FP1. Mattia Pasini (Petronas Sprinta Racing) made it two Italians inside the top three by taking third place at the close of day one.
Lüthi’s teammate, Marcel Schrötter, also found a big improvement from FP1 to jump from eleventh to fourth. Nicolo Bulega rounded out the top five, marking a great first day for the SKY Racing Team VR46 squad after a testing start to the season. Neither Marini nor Bulega have finished inside the top five so far this season, but the team look to be back to their best at their home Grand Prix.
MB Conveyors Speed Up’s Jorge Navarro is just over half a second adrift of Marini in sixth overall, closely followed by the Red Bull KTM Ajo of Jorge Martin. Meanwhile, fellow KTM rider Marco Bezzecchi crashed out at Turn 5 but, despite a trip to the medical centre, was thankfully declared fit for his home round.
Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) was the only man in the field not to improve on this morning’s time and as a result slipped to eighth overall. The French GP winner crashing out at Turn 1 halfway through the session, unhurt, and as a result ending two tenths off of his FP1 lap.
Italtrans Racing Team’s Enea Bastianini was ninth quickest ahead of fellow Italian rookie Fabio Di Giannantonio (MB Conveyors Speed Up). Simone Corsi (Tasca Racing Scuderia Moto2) is eleventh as he looks to repeat his Le Mans heroics on home soil.
Plus, ahead of FP3 on Saturday, the provisional remaining places in Q2 are heading to Remy Gardner (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team), Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2). World Championship leader Lorenzo Baldassarri is 18th ahead of FP3 but is only 0.902 behind Marini, with Moto2™ looking likely to be closely contested.
Top 10 combined:
1. Luca Marini (SKY Racing Team VR46) 1.51.986
2. Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP) + 0.008
3. Mattia Pasini (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 0.187
4. Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) + 0.461
5. Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.538
6. Jorge Navarro (MB Conveyors Speed Up) + 0.555
7. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.562
8. Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) + 0.569
9. Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team) + 0.582
10. Fabio Di Giannantonio (MB Conveyors Speed Up) + 0.631
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