Cal Crutchlow made the perfect start to his home Grand Prix by lapping inside the Silverstone lap record in FP2 this afternoon. The Briton will end the day two a quarter of a second clear of the two Movistar Yamahas with Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales second and third. The session was also highlighted by two seperate crashes for reigning champion Marc Marquez.
Marquez’s first fall came on his first timed lap of the afternoon with the Honda only making it as far as Becketts before high-siding the Spaniard out of his seat. Unsurprisingly given the high-speed nature of the crash, Marc took some time before returning to his feet and regrouping back to the pits but it soon became clear he had no serious injuries.
If there were any doubts over that, they were soon erased with 25 minutes to go as Marquez lapped straight at circuit record pace, joining Crutchlow in the high 2:01s range. Marc would even go fastest before returning to the pits but when he re-joined for his final run of the day, it ended a little too soon with a slower spill under braking for Aintree.
Crutchlow had a virtually trouble-free run and completed it with a blistering 2:00.897, a lap which temporarily lifted him seven tenths clear of the competition. Late time-attacks from the factory Yamahas would see most of that lead disappear but the LCR rider will still take an advantage into tomorrow morning’s final practice session.
Rossi edged out his team-mate Vinales by three hundredths of a second to take P2 while Aleix Espargaro finished a fine fourth for Aprilia. Marquez slipped to fifth ahead of Jorge Lorenzo on the leading Ducati while Pol Espargaro outshone even his brother by taking the KTM to seventh spot.
Johann Zarco was eighth for Tech 3 ahead of Andrea Dovizioso and Scott Redding with the late improvements from the Ducati pair denying Suzuki a rider in the top ten, the only manufacturer to miss out.