MOTOGP: Dovizioso completes Ducati practice sweep

MOTOGP: Dovizioso completes Ducati practice sweep

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MOTOGP: Dovizioso completes Ducati practice sweep

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Andrea Dovizioso continued Ducati’s strong form in practice for the Dutch TT, topping a close session headlined by a crash for reigning MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo.

Dovizioso’s teammate Andrea Iannone set the pace in both of Friday’s sessions, but as he is set to start the race last owing to a penalty, he spent the morning focusing on improving his Ducati for Sunday.

One tenth covered the top four riders on four different machines, with Dovizioso followed by Honda’s Marc Marquez, Suzuki’s Maverick Vinales and Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi.

The big talking points were a Lorenzo crash and a near miss for Marquez, both in the middle phase of the session.

While running Yamaha’s new chassis, Lorenzo lost the front end through the Esses on the back straight in a fast crash, hobbling away but primarily with only abrasions. Lorenzo was back out on his other bike, the older M1, about 10 minutes later, with Pol Espargaro having an identical crash on his Tech3 Yamaha during that window, while Avintia Ducati’s Yonny Hernandez also came unstuck at the corner with two minutes remaining.

Marquez somehow saved a major moment at Turn 1 with 20 minutes remaining, when he locked the front wheel under brakes. The bike bucked violently, but Marquez remarkably kept it together, then skated through the gravel trap and rejoined the session.

With 10 minutes to go, Danilo Petrucci was the only rider in the top 10 to have improved on his Friday time, moving from seventh to sixth.

Iannone was still on top in the combined order and fastest in FP3, his best lap three tenths off his Friday benchmark, with Vinales and Petrucci both within 0.014 seconds in the Saturday order.

That all changed with a flurry of fast laps in the closing minutes.

Rossi went fastest with four minutes to go with a time of 1m33.563s, and his 1m33.408s the next time around put him 0.183s up at the top of the order. Vinales then snuck ahead by 0.038s, before Marquez went faster again by 0.034s.

As the checkered flag flew, Marquez, Vinales and Rossi were split by 0.072s at the top, but Dovizioso pounced on his final flying lap with a 1m33.308s. Behind Iannone, Brits Cal Crutchlow and Scott Redding were sixth and seventh, with Petrucci eighth and Aleix Espargaro ninth.

Lorenzo only bettered his Friday time on his final lap, and his 1m33.919s was six tenths off Dovizioso’s pace, but good enough to hold onto 10th, and the last guaranteed place in the second phase of qualifying.

Hector Barbera stopped early with an electrical problem and would up 11th, while Dani Pedrosa will have to fight his way through the first phase of qualifying having finished 13th in a top 14 covered by one second.

Barbera’s stand-in teammate Michele Pirro also fell at Turn 1, while Eugene Laverty came unstuck at the final corner late and is at the foot of the times.

PRACTICE THREE TIMES:

Pos Rider Team Time Gap Laps
1 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1m33.308ss 1m33.308s 19
2 Marc Marquez Honda 1m33.336ss 0.028s 21
3 Maverick Vinales Suzuki 1m33.370ss 0.062s 19
4 Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1m33.408ss 0.100s 22
5 Cal Crutchlow LCR Honda 1m33.611ss 0.303s 20
6 Scott Redding Pramac Ducati 1m33.690ss 0.382s 17
7 Danilo Petrucci Pramac Ducati 1m33.731ss 0.423s 21
8 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki 1m33.734ss 0.426s 21
9 Andrea Iannone Ducati 1m33.894ss 0.586s 23
10 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 1m33.919ss 0.611s 13
11 Hector Barbera Avintia Ducati 1m33.947ss 0.639s 10
12 Pol Espargaro Tech3 Yamaha 1m33.995ss 0.687s 15
13 Dani Pedrosa Honda 1m34.022ss 0.714s 20
14 Jack Miller Marc VDS Honda 1m34.235ss 0.927s 20
15 Bradley Smith Tech3 Yamaha 1m34.502ss 1.194s 20
16 Stefan Bradl Aprilia 1m34.680ss 1.372s 21
17 Yonny Hernandez Aspar Ducati 1m35.186ss 1.878s 15
18 Alvaro Bautista Aprilia 1m35.458ss 2.150s 18
19 Tito Rabat Marc VDS Honda 1m35.628ss 2.320s 20
20 Michele Pirro Avintia Ducati 1m35.655ss 2.347s 13
21 Eugene Laverty Aspar Ducati 1m36.084ss 2.776s 13

 

Originally on Autosport.com

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