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Dovizioso is the fastest at MotoGP's new venue

Andrea Dovizioso

Buriram, October 6: After day 1 of the PTT Thailand Grand Prix it is less than a tenth that splits the top four with Andrea Dovizioso of Ducati Team finishing as the fastest man at MotoGP's latest venue.

The Italian was only 0.031 faster than FP1's quickest rider Maverick Vinales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP), however, and top Independent Team rider Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) was close - with reigning champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) in P4 and only 0.098 in arrears. It was far from lonely at the top.

Despite the tight timesheets, one of the biggest headlines of the day was a huge crash for Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) as the Spaniard fell at Turn 3 in the afternoon.

Launched over the highside, he later confirmed it was a technical issue that caused the crash.

Check up

Check up

Lorenzo was taken to the Medical Centre for a check up and then hospital in Buriram and later decided to pull out of the race.

It did, however, put a dent in his attempts to move into that all-important top ten - and the Spaniard is already riding through the pain barrier following his Turn 1 crash at Aragon.

Minimum gap

Minimum gap

Back to the front and the gaps remained minimal. Fifth on the combined time sheets was Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac Racing), who finished 0.050 behind Marquez to improve from P9 in FP1, with Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) a further 0.018 in arrears despite a fast crash at Turn 4 in FP2.

Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team) managed to string a strong second Free Practice session together to end the day seventh fastest.

Yamaha charge

Yamaha charge

Buriram's fastest in testing, Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team), ended the opening day in eighth.

Just behind the Spaniard was FP1's second quickest man Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP), who sits in a provisional Q2 place in ninth and sported Yamaha's new fairing.

Close contest

Close contest

With less than a tenth splitting the top four and a second separating the top 17, there's everything to play for on Saturday.

Tune in for FP3 as the premier class fight it out for that all-important automatic entry to Q2 at 09:55 local time (GMT +7), before qualifying begins at 14:10 local time in Buriram.

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    Story first published: Saturday, October 6, 2018, 12:57 [IST]
    Other articles published on Oct 6, 2018
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