Yamaha can leave Barcelona in a more optimistic mood considering the timesheets at the end of the test. Three M1s close inside the top six, with Vinales leading the way, followed by Zarco, and Rossi finishing in 6th place.
Maverick made the difference, the only rider able to duck under 1’39”. The Spaniard's best was a 1’38”974, the fastest lap time ever recorded at Montmelò, but it's hard to draw comparisons with the recent past considering the changes made to the track and particularly the new asphalt.
Speaking of the new surface, the riders didn't make any official comments, in that this is a private test, but the times demonstrate that the work has been a success (with 8 of them lapping in under 1’40”).
Back to the standings and Johann has proved to be in good shape, powering his Tech3 Yamaha into second place, just 0”277 behind Vinales. Good news in the Ducati garage too, with a very quick Lorenzo who closes 3rd, just 0.006 behind the Frenchman.
A step back for Honda on the other hand, with Cal Crutchlow doing the best, in fifth place (more than half a second from Vinales) and Marquez in 7th (more than 7 tenths). Both the Brit and the Spaniard set their best times in the early afternoon though, when temperatures were higher.
Both Dovizioso and Valentino improved in the final stages. The ducatista finished 5th, 0”683 from Maverick, while the Doctor closed 0.051 of a second behind the Italian. Andrea Iannone is 8th on the Suzuki, while team-mate Rins is further back, 15th and 1”858 from the front.
The two final spots in the top ten go to Nakagami on the Honda and Aleix Espargarò on the Aprilia, but they are both more than a second from the front. Eleventh for Bradley Smith, who closes ahead of Redding, Pedrosa and Syharin. The Malaysian suffered a small crash but without any physical consequences.
Rounding out the classification are Pol Espargarò, Guintoli, Callio and Simeon. After a violent crash in the morning, Tito Rabat spent the afternoon in hospital. Tests exclude any fractures, but further tests are needed to clarify whether he has suffered injury to the ligament in his left elbow. For this reason, the Avintia rider will spend the night in hospital before having x-rays tomorrow.
Photo Credits Circuit de Barcelona