Alex de Angelis - Photo Credit: MotoGP.com

Alex de Angelis - Photo Credit: MotoGP.com

 

Alex De Angelis took over at the front of the Moto2 field on Friday afternoon as the wet weather prevented any meaningful dry running on the opening day of the Valencian Grand Prix. The riders in the intermediate class did briefly run on slicks at the end of FP1 but the heavy rain which fell during the second 125cc and MotoGP sessions assured that FP2 would be run exclusively on wets.

The conditions appeared to favour the Marc VDS riders early on with Mika Kallio topping the timesheets before being replaced by Scott Redding. Italian rider Raffaele de Rosa made a surprise appearance at the front before Redding struck back, setting a 1:54.240.

It wasn't until the halfway stage that anyone troubled Redding's time with Andrea Iannone taking up the challenge. The Speed Master rider set a blistering pace given the circumstances, clocking a 1:53.079 initially before later improving to a 1:52.367.

It looked as though 'Crazy Joe' would finish the afternoon in front, especially when he set a 1:52.208 on his final run but De Angelis was setting fastest sector times behind him, and sneaked in front by just under two tenths of a second.

Shortly before the flurry of late improvements, Mattia Pasini had gone second fastest but Raffaele de Rosa's last gasp effort demoted him to fourth with Mika Kallio fifth. Yonny Hernandez was another rider who appeared in the top two late on before slipping to sixth while championship leader Stefan Bradl was a comfortable seventh. The German didn't do anything spectacular but with Marc Marquez sitting out the session and looking virtually certain to miss the race, the pressure of defending his championship lead has all but disappeared.

Michele Pirro was eighth for Gresini with Alex Baldolini was a solid ninth as the Italian substituted for the injured Sergio Gadea while Scott Redding, despite feeling happy with his wet weather performance, had to make do with tenth.

Bradley Smith only completed a handful of laps once again with the intention to protect his recovering collarbone. Unfortunately, the Briton did come off his Tech 3 Mistral on one of his few flying laps but it appeared that he avoided a recurrence of the injury.