Marc Marquez apparently didn’t like the view from second so he returned to the timesheet position of which he is accustomed at the Circuit of the Americas near Austin, Texas. The reigning world champion set the best time of the day on his final lap with a 2'04.061 to lead the pack by more that two-tenths of a second at Friday's final practice.
But it wasn't rival Maverick Vinales he pushed into second place; It was Johan Zarco. The French rider continues to show startling speed on his satellite Yamaha with a 2'04.347 that briefly topped the charts before Marquez's hot lap. Maverick Vinales, who finished FP1 looking like a contender to Marquez's Texas dominance, ended the day in third place, nearly four-tenths off the top time.
Valentino Rossi, eighth in FP1, made a leap forward with a fast lap that put him in fourth but still seven-tenths from the top time. Dani Pedrosa (5th) who spent much of FP2 locked into third, was pushed down the order as the session neared the end and more riders dipped into the 2'04s. Andrea Dovizioso (6th) just pipped Cal Crutchlow (7th). Jonas Folger (8th), Scott Redding (9th) and Andrea Iannone (10th) rounded ouf the top 10 as MotoGP practice ended for the day.
The weather, hot and dry on Friday, is expected to cool for Saturday's qualifying but with only a 10 percent chance of rain.
Marquez's FP2 time was nearly identical to to his FP2 time from one year ago of 2'04.032 but still well off his fastest-ever lap of 2'02.135 set in 2015.
|Pos.||No.||Rider||Bike||Time||Diff. / Prev.|
|2||5||Johann ZARCO||Yamaha||2'04.347||0.286 / 0.286|
|3||25||Maverick VIÑALES||Yamaha||2'04.451||0.390 / 0.104|
|4||46||Valentino ROSSI||Yamaha||2'04.806||0.745 / 0.355|
|5||26||Dani PEDROSA||Honda||2'04.811||0.750 / 0.005|
|6||4||Andrea DOVIZIOSO||Ducati||2'04.830||0.769 / 0.019|
|7||35||Cal CRUTCHLOW||Honda||2'05.005||0.944 / 0.175|
|8||94||Jonas FOLGER||Yamaha||2'05.033||0.972 / 0.028|
|9||45||Scott REDDING||Ducati||2'05.116||1.055 / 0.083|
|10||29||Andrea IANNONE||Suzuki||2'05.142||1.081 / 0.026|
|11||99||Jorge LORENZO||Ducati||2'05.282||1.221 / 0.140|
|12||9||Danilo PETRUCCI||Ducati||2'05.284||1.223 / 0.002|
|13||43||Jack MILLER||Honda||2'05.463||1.402 / 0.179|
|14||41||Aleix ESPARGARO||Aprilia||2'05.468||1.407 / 0.005|
|15||8||Hector BARBERA||Ducati||2'05.584||1.523 / 0.116|
|16||19||Alvaro BAUTISTA||Ducati||2'05.602||1.541 / 0.018|
|17||53||Tito RABAT||Honda||2'05.943||1.882 / 0.341|
|18||42||Alex RINS||Suzuki||2'06.155||2.094 / 0.212|
|19||76||Loris BAZ||Ducati||2'06.358||2.297 / 0.203|
|20||44||Pol ESPARGARO||KTM||2'06.503||2.442 / 0.145|
|21||17||Karel ABRAHAM||Ducati||2'06.709||2.648 / 0.206|
|22||22||Sam LOWES||Aprilia||2'06.741||2.680 / 0.032|
|23||38||Bradley SMITH||KTM||2'07.434||3.373 / 0.693|