Marc Marquez led the way in a fully dry second practice sessions at Phillip Island, holding out title contender Jorge Lorenzo.
With Phillip Island turning of near perfect weather for the second timed session, the pace was hot right from the start.
Within six minutes Valentino Rossi was down to a 1m30.557s, half a second off the morning’s best time, before Lorenzo went within half a tenth of the benchmark he set earlier in the day just a few minutes later with a 1m30.103s.
Lorenzo improved to a 1m30.098s later in the same run, before dropping the benchmark to a 1m30.082s on the last flying lap of his second run, 12 minutes from the end of the session.
But it wasn’t until inside the last five minutes that times started to really tumble. As riders opted for new rear tyres, the pace got quicker by the lap.
Cal Crutchlow was the first to make his move, going fastest with a 1m29.579s, the first time under the 1m30s mark for the weekend.
That time stood for around four minutes, before Lorenzo – now running a brand new option rear – blasted his way to a 1m29.433s.
But it was Marquez who had the last laugh, replying seconds later with a 1m29.383s, the time that would ultimately top the session.
Maverick Vinales was quick on the Suzuki, having sat inside the Top 6 even before the new tyre happy hour kicked off, then improving to a 1m29.518s 90 seconds before the session came to an end, good enough for P3.
Andrea Iannone was fourth on the Ducati, nearly a second quicker than team-mate Andrea Dovizioso who was just 14th fastest, while Crutchlow wound up fifth after being fastest with five minutes of the session remaining.
Dani Pedrosa was sixth fastest, Danilo Petrucci seventh, while Bradley Smith improved right at the flag fall to sneak in to the top eight.
Having traded fastest times with Lorenzo early in the session, Rossi ended up just ninth fastest, more than sixth-tenths off the pace. However, the points leader was one of the few riders not to opt for a new rear tyre for the third run.
Best of the local brigade was again Jack Miller. Even in dry conditions the Aussie ran as high as fifth during the session, ultimately finishing up a respectable 11th with a 1m30.127s.
His compatriots didn’t fare quite so well, Anthony West and Damian Cudlin propping up the back end of the times in 24th and 25th respectively.
|1||Marc Marquez||Repsol Honda Team||1:29.383||1:29.383|
|2||Jorge Lorenzo||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:29.433||+0.050|
|3||Maverick Viñales||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||1:29.518||+0.135|
|4||Andrea Iannone||Ducati Team||1:29.544||+0.161|
|5||Cal Crutchlow||CWM LCR Honda||1:29.579||+0.196|
|6||Dani Pedrosa||Repsol Honda Team||1:29.876||+0.493|
|7||Danilo Petrucci||Pramac Racing||1:30.021||+0.638|
|8||Bradley Smith||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:30.032||+0.649|
|9||Valentino Rossi||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:30.041||+0.658|
|10||Aleix Espargaro||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||1:30.113||+0.730|
|11||Jack Miller||CWM LCR Honda||1:30.127||+0.744|
|12||Nicky Hayden||Aspar MotoGP Team||1:30.184||+0.801|
|13||Hector Barbera||Avintia Racing||1:30.278||+0.895|
|14||Andrea Dovizioso||Ducati Team||1:30.451||+1.068|
|15||Pol Espargaro||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:30.552||+1.169|
|16||Yonny Hernandez||Pramac Racing||1:30.660||+1.277|
|17||Scott Redding||Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS||1:30.773||+1.390|
|18||Eugene Laverty||Aspar MotoGP Team||1:30.910||+1.527|
|19||Alvaro Bautista||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:31.260||+1.877|
|20||Mike di Meglio||Avintia Racing||1:31.339||+1.956|
|21||Stefan Bradl||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:31.577||+2.194|
|22||Toni Elias||Athinà Forward Racing||1:32.122||+2.739|
|23||Loris Baz||Athinà Forward Racing||1:32.309||+2.926|
|24||Anthony West||AB Motoracing||1:32.592||+3.209|
|25||Damian Cudlin||E-motion Ioda Racing Project||1:34.479||+5.096|