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Australian MotoGP: Fast-starting Marquez tops first practice

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Australian MotoGP: Fast-starting Marquez tops first practice
By:
Oct 20, 2017, 1:04 AM

An early Marc Marquez lap was good enough to top the opening 45-minute practice session for the Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island.

Marquez wasted little time getting down to business when the session kicked off, the MotoGP points leader consistently the first to dip into the 1m31s, the 1m30s, and then the 1m29s bracket.

By the 10-minute mark Marquez was quickest with a 1m29.722s, going quicker again five minutes later with a 1m29.699s.

Right before the 20-minute mark he lowered the benchmark to 1m29.602s on mediums front and rear, that time good enough to hold off a number of soft-tyre runs at the end of the session and leave Marquez on top.

Tech 3 Yamaha rider Johann Zarco wound up best of those to have tried out the soft tyres in the closing stages of the 45-minute session, jumping into second right on the flag with a 1m29.695s.

That knocked hometown hero Jack Miller, who had gone second quickest moments before with a 1m29.724s, down to third on the Marc VDS Honda.

Andrea Dovizioso was just fourth quickest, after making a mistake on what looked to be a session-topping soft tyre run right at the end of the session.

The Ducati title contender was quickest through the first sector on his second last lap, only to run wide at Turn 4 and ruin any chance of knocking Marquez off top spot.

He finished up with a best time of 1m29.753s, set right at the flag, ahead of Maverick Yinales on the best of the factory Yamahas.

Andrea Iannone was sixth quickest on the Suzuki, one spot clear of Pol Espargaro on the KTM.

Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati) was eighth, first of the riders not to break into the 1m29s. Bradley Smith (KTM), who was first of the riders to try out the soft rear tyre, and Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) rounded out the top 10.

Valentino Rossi languished outside the top 10 all session and managed just 13th, the best part of a second off the pace on the second works Yamaha.

Practice results:

Pos.RiderBikeTimeGap
1 93 spain  Marc Marquez  Honda 1'29.602  
2 5 france  Johann Zarco  Yamaha 1'29.695 0.093
3 43 australia  Jack Miller  Honda 1'29.724 0.122
4 4 italy  Andrea Dovizioso  Ducati 1'29.753 0.151
5 25 spain  Maverick Viñales  Yamaha 1'29.781 0.179
6 29 italy  Andrea Iannone  Suzuki 1'29.857 0.255
7 44 spain  Pol Espargaro  KTM 1'29.878 0.276
8 99 spain  Jorge Lorenzo  Ducati 1'30.059 0.457
9 38 united_kingdom  Bradley Smith  KTM 1'30.279 0.677
10 35 united_kingdom  Cal Crutchlow  Honda 1'30.384 0.782
11 26 spain  Dani Pedrosa  Honda 1'30.400 0.798
12 41 spain  Aleix Espargaro  Aprilia 1'30.494 0.892
13 46 italy  Valentino Rossi  Yamaha 1'30.553 0.951
14 17 czech_republic  Karel Abraham  Ducati 1'30.879 1.277
15 45 united_kingdom  Scott Redding  Ducati 1'31.001 1.399
16 9 italy  Danilo Petrucci  Ducati 1'31.174 1.572
17 42 spain  Alex Rins  Suzuki 1'31.329 1.727
18 8 spain  Hector Barbera  Ducati 1'31.457 1.855
19 53 spain  Tito Rabat  Honda 1'31.599 1.997
20 76 france  Loris Baz  Ducati 1'31.614 2.012
21 19 spain  Alvaro Bautista  Ducati 1'31.994 2.392
22 22 united_kingdom  Sam Lowes  Aprilia 1'32.426 2.824
23 23 australia  Broc Parkes  Yamaha 1'33.054 3.452
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