With very photogenic thunder gracing Spielberg with its presence the previous day, the lightweight class was lucky to have seen a nearly dry piece of tarmac waiting for them on Friday morning.
Championship leader Joan Mir decided to honour the track of his first world championship success by setting camp at the top of the timesheets early in the session and waiting for his rivals to catch up. Bo Bendsneyder and Enea Bastianini got their brief time in the sun but then Mir stroke back to be the first rider of the morning into the 1:37s and almost half a second faster than his colleagues, despite his enthusiasm seeing several of his laps cancelled for exuberant use of track limits.
After Sunday’s heroics, Aron Canet kept his speed and proved to be Mir’s closest challenger, the Spaniard little over three tenths down on his compatriot. Marcos Ramirez added another Spanish rider to the top three mix, the Platinum Bay rider four tenths slower than Mir.
Bastianini and Bendsneyder had to settle for fourth and fifth positions, over six tenths down, while Jules Danilo joined the top six to end the session significantly higher than his teammate. While we’re on that, Romano Fenati spent most of the session over a second slower than his championship arch enemy and ended the morning in eighteenth.
The top ten was completed by some very familiar faces: John McPhee seventh, Fabio di Giannantonio eight, a gesticulating Nicolo Bulega ninth and last weekend’s poleman, Gabriel Rodrigo, in tenth position.
Despite still suffering from his fractured heel, Jorge Martin managed to post a few more laps than this time last week and made it all the way through the first practice session to finish a very honourable seventh. His time was scrapped after the flag, when some track limits infringements were punished, the Spaniard dropping back to fourteenth place.
Brno front row starter Juanfran Guevara had a tame morning down in twenty-fifth, two places ahead of Andrea Migno.
|8||21||Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO||Honda||1'38.398||0.849||0.002|
|29||48||Lorenzo DALLA PORTA||Mahindra||1'39.885||2.336||0.242|