Andrea Dovizioso led a factory Ducati 1-2 in Friday practice ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix as the Bologna squad’s testing domination at the Red Bull Ring continued into the race weekend. Dovizioso ended the afternoon a quarter of a second clear of teammate Andrea Iannone but the chasing pack, led by Suzuki’s Maverick Vinales, trailed over eight tenths behind.
In surprisingly cold conditions in Spielberg, Vinales topped the FP1 timesheets but his 1:25.866 was beaten within the opening four minutes of the second session as Ducati stamped their authority. Before the end of their first runs, both Iannone and Dovizioso had actually broken into the 1:24s with the lap times tumbling as the track evolved.
With a couple of minutes to go, the competition looked to be closing up but Ducati stretched clear again, Dovizioso improving to a 1:23.617 while Iannone’s 1:23.855 saw him claim a comfortable second. The outgoing Ducati rider appeared to make an enemy of Eugene Laverty in the process though with the two seen involved in an angry exchange as they lined up for their practice starts.
Vinales backed up his morning pace with third while Valentino Rossi gave Yamaha hope that they may still prove competitive around a circuit unsuited to their YZR-M1, finishing fourth fastest on a 1:24.483. Cal Crutchlow was the leading Honda rider in fifth ahead of another pair of Ducatis, Danilo Petrucci and Hector Barbera taking sixth and seventh on their satellite machines, while Jorge Lorenzo could only manage eighth after struggling in the cooler conditions.
Michele Pirro was ninth on his latest wildcard outing but championship leader Marc Marquez languished down in tenth on a terrible day for Repsol Honda. Dani Pedrosa’s day never picked up after a crash at the penultimate corner in FP1 and his afternoon ended down in a lowly 19th.
2016 NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Osterreich (Friday Classification)
|1||4. Andrea DOVIZIOSO||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:23.617|
|2||29. Andrea IANNONE||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:23.855|
|3||25. Maverick VINALES||Suzuki||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||1:24.471|
|4||46. Valentino ROSSI||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:24.483|
|5||35. Cal CRUTCHLOW||Honda||LCR Honda||1:24.688|
|6||9. Danilo PETRUCCI||Ducati||Octo Pramac Yakhnich||1:24.866|
|7||8. Hector BARBERA||Ducati||Avintia Racing||1:24.956|
|8||99. Jorge LORENZO||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:24.988|
|9||51. Michele PIRRO||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:24.988|
|10||93. Marc MARQUEZ||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||1:25.039|
|11||68. Yonny HERNANDEZ||Ducati||Pull & Bear Aspar Ducati Team||1:25.042|
|12||45. Scott REDDING||Ducati||Octo Pramac Yakhnich||1:25.140|
|13||44. Pol ESPARGARO||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:25.221|
|14||43. Jack MILLER||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||1:25.321|
|15||53. Tito RABAT||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||1:25.770|
|16||19. Alvaro BAUTISTA||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:25.882|
|17||38. Bradley SMITH||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:25.941|
|18||41. Aleix ESPARGARO||Suzuki||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||1:25.945|
|19||26. Dani PEDROSA||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||1:26.130|
|20||6. Stefan BRADL||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:26.149|
|21||50. Eugene LAVERTY||Ducati||Pull & Bear Aspar Ducati Team||1:26.469|
|22||76. Loris BAZ||Ducati||Avintia Racing||1:26.491|