Elf Marc VDS Racing Team's Sam Lowes bounced back from his monster Portimao highside by setting Friday's fastest lap in Moto2™ at the Red Bull Spanish Grand Prix. The Briton looks set to go to battle with Red Bull KTM Ajo's Remy Garnder once again this weekend with the Australian closing out the session only 0.160 seconds behind his title rival.
Not only did Lowes bounce back from his opening lap crash in Portimao but he also refound some form after tucking the front at Turn 6 earlier in the day as he pushed for a fast lap in FP1. His earlier off was long-forgotten when he stormed to the top of the timesheets, finding four-tenths of a second on what he managed in FP1.
Australia's Gardner was unable to improve on his best lap from Friday morning as winds began to swirl around Jerez, but his 1:41.675 from FP1 was still enough for second overall on the combined timesheet and his best lap from FP2 was, likewise, good enough for second place behind Lowes.
Petronas Sprinta Racing's Jake Dixon made an impressive step forward from morning to afternoon by finding half a second to jump inside the top three. Fourth overall was Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) who, like Gardner, couldn't find any further pace in FP2. In fact, the Italian will just be thankful he escaped a double disaster for the SKY VR46 squad after Celestino Vietti very nearly wiped out his teammate in a Turn 6 crash.
Italtrans Racing Team's Joe Roberts completed the top five. The American improved by over a quarter of a second to move to within three tenths of a second of the pacesetter on the opening day in Jerez. Sixth on the combined timesheets is Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo), ahead of Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up), Fabio Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) and Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team).
All four riders failed to improve on their FP1 laps meaning only four of the top ten set their fastest lap of Friday in FP2. That fact thanks to Nicolo Bulega (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) improving by two tenths to take the final place inside the top ten.
Combined top ten:
1. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) - 1:41.515
2. Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.160
3. Jake Dixon (Petronas Sprinta Racing) + 0.270
4. Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46) + 0.282
5. Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team) + 0.298
6. Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) + 0.395
7. Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) + 0.403
8. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) + 0.409
9. Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) + 0.439
10. Nicolo Bulega (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) + 0.487