Jorge Lorenzo has taken his pace from testing into the first full event of the season. The reigning world champion topped the timesheets early, and by the halfway mark had set a pace few could follow during his first long run. In the second half of the session, he dropped his time even further, stretching out his advantage to over a quarter of a second.
Valentino Rossi ended the session in second, the Movistar Yamaha rider chasing his teammate hard. Rossi sat in a group of riders including Maverick Viñales and Hector Barbera, lapping at speed and pushing for a fast lap at the end of the session. Rossi ended the session just ahead of the factory Ducati of Andrea Iannone, who was in turn just quicker than Hector Barbera. Barbera's pace on the Avintia Ducati GP14.2 was impressive, using Rossi as a target but never truly getting a tow from the nine-time world champion.
Rossi had done the same to Maverick Viñales, the Suzuki rider leading the group. Viñales pace was very solid, ending the session in fifth after a quick lap at the end of testing. The gap from Rossi in second to Viñales in fifth is small, just 0.14 seconds.
Pol Espargaro was the first of the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha bikes, after Bradley Smith had a crash at the end of the session. Espargaro just pipped Dani Pedrosa to sixth, the Repsol Honda man the first rider on an RC213V. Pedrosa was over a tenth quicker than his teammate Marc Marquez, who had been closer to the top of the timesheets earlier in the session.
A pair of Ducatis round out the top ten, with Andrea Dovizioso on the factory bike leading the Pramac Ducati of Scott Redding. The entire top ten were covered by less than a second.
That was the last session of practice for MotoGP on Thursday. Tomorrow, they will have two more free practice sessions, before qualifying on Saturday.