Rodrigo sets new fastest-ever Moto3™ lap around Jerez in FP1

After four months away, it took the Argentine no time whatsoever to get back up to speed by setting a new all-time lap record

Kömmerling Gresini Moto3's Gabriel Rodrigo stunned the Moto3™ paddock at the Gran Premio Red Bull de España on Friday morning by setting a new fastest-ever lightweight class lap around the Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto. After four months away from Grand Prix racing, the Argentine set a 1:45.663 in the closing moments of FP1 to go a tenth quicker than the previous all-time lap record, coincidentally also held by Rodrigo.

Reale Avintia Racing's Carlos Tatay was the first man back out on track as the lights when green in Andalucia, with Red Bull KTM Tech3's Ayumu Sasaki the first faller of the weekend just moments later at the fast Turn 7; thankfully the Japanese rider walked away OK, though.

Red Bull KTM Ajo's Raul Fernandez sat at the top of the timesheets for the vast majority of the session but, following Rodrigo's incredible lap in the final seconds, the Spaniard ended up 0.430 adrift in second place. After ending Wednesday's lightweight class test as quickest, Petronas Sprinta Racing's John McPhee continued his form into the start of Round 2 in the Moto3™ World Championship by finishing FP1 third on the timesheets, 0.439 seconds behind the pacesetter.

Half a second behind Rodrigo and fourth in FP1 was Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46), with the reigning Junior Moto3™ World Champion Jeremy Alcoba, Rodrigo's Kömmerling Gresini Moto3 teammate, a place behind in fifth. After sitting out the first 20 minutes of the session due to illegal training during the coronavirus enforced break, Sergio Garcia (Estrella Galicia 0,0) eventually got out on track and finished twelfth.

Moto3™ will be back out on track later on Friday afternoon at 13:15 (GMT+2) local time in Jerez, where everyone will look to try and close the gap to Rodrigo at the front.

Top 10:
 1. Gabriel Rodrigo (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) – 1:45.663
 2. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.430
 3. John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 0.439
 4. Andrea Migno (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.502
 5. Jeremy Alcoba (Kömmerling Gresini Moto3) + 0.526
 6. Celestino Vietti (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.631
 7. Kaito Toba (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.636
 8. Albert Arenas (Gaviota Aspar Team Moto3) + 0.796
 9. Jaume Masia (Leopard Racing) + 0.860
 10. Tony Arbolino (Rivacold Snipers Team) + 0.886

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