Ivan Silva became the first CRT rider to finish top of an official MotoGP practice session, albeit in fortuitous circumstances, as rain midway through the session rendered his time unbeatable. The Avintia Blusens rider was testing a new BQR-Inmotec chassis and had the most to learn by going out in the treacherous conditions, as opposed to the factory teams who stayed in their garages.
In fact, only four satellite riders and a single factory rider bothered to go out, leaving the stage to the CRT competitors. Randy de Puniet set the pace early on but the times were slower than the preceding Moto3 session which was run in the dry. The Frenchman got down to a 1:55.214 which was easily eclipsed by Silva who clocked a 1:48.674 12 minutes into the session.
The rain soon fell again which took away any possibility of Silva's time being beaten but a few riders did brave the conditions later on, and with rain possible for the rest of the weekend, that may prove to be an inspired move.
Stefan Bradl was quickest in the late mini-session in full wet conditions, albeit six seconds slower than Silva, with Alvaro Bautista going fourth for Gresini Honda just behind de Puniet. Only four other riders set a time, each of them ten seconds or more in arrears but for the record, Mattia Pasini was fifth ahead of Michele Pirro, Yonny Hernandez and Colin Edwards.
Aside from exploratory laps by Andrea Dovizioso, Ben Spies, Karel Abraham and James Ellison, that was the only track action on Friday morning with the teams hoping for more favourable conditions this afternoon.