Weather more befitting of Mugello greeted the riders for MotoGP FP2 in Italy this afternoon and it was Italian hero Valentino Rossi that got the partisan home crowd on their feet with an opening salvo that shows The Doctor means business this weekend.
|Rossi and Lorenzo, as close at Mugello as at Le Mans
Photo: Yamaha MotoGP
Rossi posted 4 successive fastest laps to start the session before team mate Lorenzo took over at the top after a tow over the line from a slow-starting Pedrosa, only to regain top spot on the very next lap with a 1:49.036, some 0.2s ahead of the Lorenzo and Monster Tech3 Yamaha man Cal Crutchlow, looking to back up his mid-week claims that he is ready or a full Factory ride for 2014.
After a short quiet spell the action resumed with Rossi immediatey throwing down the gauntlet with the first sub 1 min 48s lap before Marc Marquez had the fastest crash of his career as the rookie lost control of his Honda RC213V under braking for turn 1 at almost 200mph as the bike snapped sideways on to the damp grass but fortunately remaining between Marquez and the exposed concrete wall to prevent serious injury to the young Spaniard. Marquez was transferred to the Clinica Mobile and later cleared of any serious injuries.
Marquez was not the only one to fall victim to the Mugello circuit, Monster Yamaha Tech3 rookie Bradley Smith high-sided his M1 at Casanova Sevelli, trapping his left hand under the machine as it slid in to the gravel. Early reports from the medial center state that Smith has damage to his left little finger and wrist.
The action continued as a titanic battle for the top spot ensued between Rossi and Lorenzo with Crutchlow keeping a watching brief; Rossi kept the upper hand until the very end of the session when Lorenzo posted his fastest lap of the session of 1:48.704s with 3 minutes remaining as Iannone took a lesson in how to lap Mugello properly from his friend Rossi to post the 4th fastest time before being bumped back by a struggling Pedrosa and an impressive Nicky Hayden.
Rossi snatched the top spot back from an elbow-dragging Lorenzo but it was the Spaniard who had the last laugh by posting his sixth successive improved lap of 1:48.375 in his usual metronomic style just 0.034 ahead of the man the bulk of the crowd have come to see and Crutchlow an impressive 0.297s shy of Lorenzo but a relatively comfortable 0.75s clear of Hayden in fourth place with Pedrosa fifth 1.008s behind Lorenzo.
|1||99||Jorge LORENZO||SPA||Yamaha Factory Racing||Yamaha||341.6||1’48.375|
|2||46||Valentino ROSSI||ITA||Yamaha Factory Racing||Yamaha||339.4||1’48.409||0.034 / 0.034|
|3||35||Cal CRUTCHLOW||GBR||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||Yamaha||337.8||1’48.672||0.297 / 0.263|
|4||69||Nicky HAYDEN||USA||Ducati Team||Ducati||338.4||1’49.377||1.002 / 0.705|
|5||26||Dani PEDROSA||SPA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||340.0||1’49.383||1.008 / 0.006|
|6||29||Andrea IANNONE||ITA||Energy T.I. Pramac Racing||Ducati||340.6||1’49.467||1.092 / 0.084|
|7||4||Andrea DOVIZIOSO||ITA||Ducati Team||Ducati||338.8||1’49.543||1.168 / 0.076|
|8||6||Stefan BRADL||GER||LCR Honda MotoGP||Honda||338.9||1’49.595||1.220 / 0.052|
|9||14||Randy DE PUNIET||FRA||Power Electronics Aspar||ART||322.4||1’49.599||1.224 / 0.004|
|10||51||Michele PIRRO||ITA||Ducati Test Team||Ducati||340.1||1’49.649||1.274 / 0.050|
|11||19||Alvaro BAUTISTA||SPA||GO&FUN Honda Gresini||Honda||338.8||1’49.733||1.358 / 0.084|
|12||41||Aleix ESPARGARO||SPA||Power Electronics Aspar||ART||326.3||1’49.769||1.394 / 0.036|
|13||38||Bradley SMITH||GBR||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||Yamaha||335.2||1’50.103||1.728 / 0.334|
|14||93||Marc MARQUEZ||SPA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||342.0||1’50.210||1.835 / 0.107|
|15||8||Hector BARBERA||SPA||Avintia Blusens||FTR||320.6||1’50.400||2.025 / 0.190|
|16||11||Ben SPIES||USA||Ignite Pramac Racing||Ducati||340.9||1’51.105||2.730 / 0.705|
|17||5||Colin EDWARDS||USA||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||FTR Kawasaki||323.5||1’51.433||3.058 / 0.328|
|18||17||Karel ABRAHAM||CZE||Cardion AB Motoracing||ART||325.8||1’51.528||3.153 / 0.095|
|19||68||Yonny HERNANDEZ||COL||Paul Bird Motorsport||ART||322.9||1’51.644||3.269 / 0.116|
|20||9||Danilo PETRUCCI||ITA||Came IodaRacing Project||Ioda-Suter||322.0||1’51.937||3.562 / 0.293|
|21||7||Hiroshi AOYAMA||JPN||Avintia Blusens||FTR||320.9||1’52.182||3.807 / 0.245|
|22||71||Claudio CORTI||ITA||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||FTR Kawasaki||326.3||1’53.314||4.939 / 1.132|
|23||70||Michael LAVERTY||GBR||Paul Bird Motorsport||PBM||321.8||1’53.480||5.105 / 0.166|
|24||67||Bryan STARING||AUS||GO&FUN Honda Gresini||FTR Honda||324.4||1’54.231||5.856 / 0.751|
|25||52||Lukas PESEK||CZE||Came IodaRacing Project||Ioda-Suter||312.0||1’54.829||6.454 / 0.598|