As is always the case in Free Practice 3, the top ten riders for Q2 were decided by virtue of their combined best lap times since the start of Friday. Championship leader Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) posted his personal best this morning, reducing the overall leading pace to 2’02.485 on his first premier class visit to Silverstone. Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo – who had been fastest on Friday – was demoted to second, one and a half tenths down, with LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl third and just 19 thousandths in arrears of the reigning World Champion.
Fourth was GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista, who had taken pole at Silverstone last year, whereas Marquez’s teammate Dani Pedrosa was fifth but the only rider in the combined top ten to have delivered his best lap on Friday. Sixth was Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso from Yamaha Factory Racing’s Valentino Rossi, with the top ten being completed by Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden, Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Cal Crutchlow and Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro (CRT leader).
Despite finishing ninth, Crutchlow was very much in the wars. His first bike was destroyed when the Coventry-born rider lost control at Maggots on his out-lap; he then also crashed his second machine, losing the front end at Vale towards the end of the session. Farm corner was the scene of most drama as PBM’s Michael Laverty and Came IodaRacing Project’s Lukas Pesek hit trouble, as well as Laverty’s teammate Yonny Hernandez who would then suffer a second crash at Brooklands.
Heading into Q1, Bradley Smith (Tech3) and Andrea Iannone (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing) are favourites to proceed to the top 12 shootout, having ended combined practice in 11th and 12thplaces. Dani Pedrosa will also be aware of his position, having finished this morning’s session in only tenth spot; however, this afternoon’s temperatures will be closer to those in which he went third quickest behind Lorenzo and Marquez on Friday.
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