Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Jorge Martin continued his wet weather form of FP1 into FP2 by ending the day fastest in Moto2™ at the Pramac Generac Australian Grand Prix. The Portuguese rider was over seven-tenths clear in the torrential rain of Friday morning but a few hours later, and now without a cloud in the sky and the sun shining down on the Phillip Island circuit, Martin closed the day three tenths clear of his Red Bull KTM Ajo teammate Brad Binder.
It was KTM’s day at Phillip Island with four of the top five in the intermediate class riding one of the Austrian factory’s machines. Martin and Binder lead the way, with Beta Tools Speed Up’s Jorge Navarro the KTM sandwich filling in third place. Newly recruited MotoGP™ rider Iker Lecuona (monday.com American Racing) closed the day fourth on the timesheets after sitting out FP1 this morning, before Red Bull KTM Tech 3’s Marco Bezzecchi rounded out a top-five dominated by orange.
What a session this is shaping up to be for KTM! ????@Marco12_B moves up to fourth, giving the Austrian manufacturer a lockout of the top four spots! ????#AustralianGP ???????? pic.twitter.com/1XjkpGrysB— MotoGP™ ???????? (@MotoGP) October 25, 2019
ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team’s Tetsuta Nagashima was 0.590 of a second adrift of Martin in sixth place. After ending second in the wet, SKY Racing Team VR46’s Nicolo Bulega slipped back to seventh on the dry timesheets of FP2. World Championship leader Alex Marquez (Marc VDS EG 0,0) had a less dramatic afternoon by ending eighth, following a crash on his out lap earlier in the day.
The top ten was rounded out by NTS RW Racing GP’s Jesko Raffin and MV Agusta Temporary Forward’s Stefano Manzi, meaning five different chassis manufacturers found themselves inside the Moto2™ top ten. Raffin had quite the end to the session when he collided with Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) down the start-finish straight and, fortunately, both riders managed to avoid a crash. That incident came after Lowes himself had crashed at Turn 11 earlier in FP2.
The worst possible start to FP2 for @SamLowes22! ????— MotoGP™ ???????? (@MotoGP) October 25, 2019
The Briton is livid after this crash at Turn 11! ????#AustralianGP ???????? pic.twitter.com/LPDK8sro46
With the wet weather forecast to return ahead of FP3 on Saturday morning, it means those currently sat eleventh to fourteenth look likely to progress through to Q2, with those riders being: Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP), Enea Bastianini (Italtrans Racing Team), Augusto Fernandez (FlexBox HP40) and Lorenzo Baldassarri (FlexBox HP40).
Top 10 combined:
1. Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) – 1:33.010
2. Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.343
3. Jorge Navarro (Beta Tools Speed Up) + 0.395
4. Iker Lecuona (monday.com American Racing) + 0.464
5. Marco Bezzecchi (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) + 0.471
6. Tetsuta Nagashima (ONEXOX TKKR SAG Team) + 0.590
7. Nicolo Bulega (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.602
8. Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) + 0.665
9. Jesko Raffin (NTS RW Racing GP) + 0.718
10. Stefano Manzi (MV Agusta Temporary Forward) + 0.793
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