JEREZ DE LA FRONTERA, Spain – Danilo Petrucci was fastest for Mission Winnow Ducati during the opening day of MotoGP practice at Circuito de Jerez-Ángel Nieto on Friday.
Petrucci turned the fastest time of the day during FP2, lapping the 2.751-mile, 13-turn circuit in 1:37.909 aboard his Desmosedici GP 19.
The 28-year-old Italian is hoping his fast start bodes well for the remainder of the weekend.
“I’m happy with how this first day of practice went. I didn’t do a perfect lap, but it was enough to finish on top, and I was quite competitive especially in terms of pace,” said Petrucci. “We made very few changes on the bike, finding a good rhythm also with the hard rear tire, but FP4 tomorrow will be crucial to finalize the choice of the compounds for the race. Qualifying has been my weak point so far this year, so we’ll keep our guard up.
“I think tomorrow morning the lap times will drop further, but in the meantime we started off on the right foot,” he continued. “Our goal is to qualify on the first couple of rows on the grid, then to challenge for the podium on Sunday.”
Five-time and defending premier class champion Marc Marquez was second-quick for the day on his Repsol Honda machine, just .012 seconds off of Petrucci’s leading lap, with the sister Ducati of Andrea Doviziosoin third at 1:38.006.
Marquez’s Honda teammate Jorge Lorenzo finished the day in fourth (1:38.045), with the LCR Honda Castrol of leading independent rider Cal Crutchlow completing the top five.
Sixth through 10th were Yamaha’s Maverick Viñales, Takaaki Nakagami, rookie Fabio Quartararo, wild card rider Stefan Bradl and Pramac Racing’s Jack Miller.