Jonathan Rea didn’t encounter the ideal start to life in MotoGP as changeable weather conditions restricted him to just six laps on Friday. The Ulsterman sat out the morning session before heading straight out in the afternoon but steady drizzle forced him back in with little to learn on the slick tyres. With his Grand Prix debut just over 24 hours away, Rea is desperate for a dry Saturday so he can acclimatise himself with his new machinery.

“It was a frustrating day with these weather conditions. This morning the track was slightly wet and began to dry up towards the end of the session, but then it began to rain again, so we didn’t make it out at all. Then in second free practice I went out straight away with the slick tyre to try and get some kind of feeling and I only managed three full laps as the tyre wasn’t getting up to temperature. It was a pretty pointless exercise and I didn’t have any real feedback to give to the engineers. It’s a strange situation when the temperature is so low that none of the top riders even go out on track. We need to cross our fingers for some sunshine tomorrow so I can find a good rhythm on the bike and gain some confidence in the tyres in time for Qualifying”.

Repsol Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa didn’t turn a wheel all day with the risk outweighing the potential reward for the championship contender. Pedrosa is now turning his attention to final practice with kinder weather expected.

“On days like this it’s almost impossible to get any feedback on the bike. Actually, we saw in both sessions that the weather was changing so quickly that the riders going out with slick tyres had to come back in because it started raining or the other way around: going out with wets and destroying them in just a few laps as it was drying up again. The weather forecast looks better for tomorrow and Sunday, so let’s hope we can take advantage of tomorrow morning’s session to find a good setting and have a good qualifying”.