Vinales Tops FP2 as Big Names Struggle

|Maverick Vinales (Photo Credit:

Maverick Vinales continued to set the pace in second practice for the Argentine Grand Prix but a number of high-profile riders now find themselves at the mercy of the weather with Q2 spots on the line. Heavy rain is forecast for Saturday and should that prove correct, Johann Zarco, Valentino Rossi, Dani Pedrosa and both factory Ducati riders will be stranded outside the top ten.

The early stages of FP2 saw riders preparing for Sunday’s race on harder rubber with Michelin keen to assess the viability of the safety option brought to Termas de Rio Hondo. With ten minutes to go though, all attention shifted to qualifying with the teams mindful that this afternoon’s running may set the field for tomorrow’s qualifying session.

Pedrosa’s ‘qualifying run’ couldn’t have got off to a worse start with a crash at turn thirteen but elsewhere, a number of customer Ducati riders were lighting up the timing screens. Karel Abraham was among them, setting the fastest time of the weekend with a 1:39.880 while Aspar team-mate Alvaro Bautista slotted into second behind him.

Marc Marquez soon responded, bouncing back from his FP1 crash to clock a 1:39.778, but Vinales would have the last word, going three tenths faster than his title rival. The Aspar duo were third and fourth while Danilo Petrucci and Loris Baz ensured four Ducatis would make up the top six on combined times. Cal Crutchlow held top spot at one spot before slipping to seventh while Jonas Folger, Aleix Espargaro and Andrea Iannone round out the top ten.

While so many Ducatis were flying, Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo endured a horrendous afternoon, finishing fourteenth and eighteenth, while Valentino Rossi’s early season struggles are also continuing. The Italian was only sixteenth after being baulked by Alex Rins on his soft tyre run.


2017 Gran Premio Motul de la Republica Argentina: Free Practice Classification

PosRiderConstructorTeamBest Time 
125. Maverick VinalesYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:39.477Q2
293. Marc MarquezHondaRepsol Honda Team1:39.778Q2
317. Karel AbrahamDucatiPull & Bear Aspar Team1:39.880Q2
419. Alvaro BautistaDucatiPull & Bear Aspar Team1:39.922Q2
59. Danilo PetrucciDucatiOCTO Pramac Racing1:39.960Q2
676. Loris BazDucatiReale Avintia Racing1:40.120Q2
735. Cal CrutchlowHondaLCR Honda1:40.124Q2
894. Jonas FolgerYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:40.157Q2
941. Aleix EspargaroApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:40.175Q2
1029. Andrea IannoneSuzukiTeam SUZUKI ECSTAR1:40.250Q2
1145. Scott ReddingDucatiOCTO Pramac Racing1:40.338Q1
125. Johann ZarcoYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:40.340Q1
1326. Dani PedrosaHondaRepsol Honda Team1:40.345Q1
144. Andrea DoviziosoDucatiDucati Team1:40.399Q1
158. Hector BarberaDucatiReale Avintia Racing1:40.431Q1
1646. Valentino RossiYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:40.531Q1
1743. Jack MillerHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:40.588Q1
1899. Jorge LorenzoDucatiDucati Team1:40.599Q1
1953. Tito RabatHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:40.908Q1
2042. Alex RinsSuzukiTeam SUZUKI ECSTAR1:41.083Q1
2144. Pol EspargaroKTMRed Bull KTM Factory Racing1:41.632Q1
2238. Bradley SmithKTMRed Bull KTM Factory Racing1:42.074Q1
2322. Sam LowesApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:42.179Q1