The cloudy afternoon in Mugello got more gloomy shortly after the start of the session, the red flag coming out for a heavy crash for Michelle Pirro in turn one. The Italian was said to be conscious and moving by the time he was picked up by an ambulance and the session was restarted with 28 minutes on the clock and with Andrea Iannone leading. The Suzuki man manged to sneak in a lap to improve his time at the top of the timesheets before another red flag was caused by another Ducati. Soon after beating the top speed record, Andrea Dovizioso’s engine called it quits in turn one and spit up some flames to go with the bit of oil it left on track.
Once the session restarted for the final 22 minutes, Marc Marquez continued with a troublesome session of his own, the Spaniard having tumbled in the gravel trap in turn four on cold hard tyres before the second red flag. Whether it was because the weather or the crash, the world champion slipped on a medium front-soft rear combination for his last run and swiftly picked up the lead of the session. The Repsol rider’s position looked secure until some new sets of softs went in for his rivals in the final five minutes. Maverick Viñales was the first to attack but Iannone had none of it, making light work of traffic on his fast lap to be the only rider to get into the 1:46s, leaving the Yamaha man nearly four tenths behind.
With Viñales in a pleasantly surprising (for his side of the garage) second position, Marquez settled for third, another tenth down. Johann Zarco no longer had the responsibility of carrying the flag for Yamaha but he did a reasonable job in fourth place, six tenths down on Iannone. Jack Miller continued a consistent performance throughout Friday with a fifth place, only just sneaking ahead of Cal Crutchlow and Valentino Rossi.
After an excellent FP1, Franco Morbidelli managed to hang on to the back of Marquez on a hot lap and climbed into third position provisionally, eventually being dropped down to eight after some late improvers posted their times. Danilo Petrucci and Jorge Lorenzo completed the top ten as the final two riders within a second of Iannone.
After his eventful session, Dovizioso failed to improve on his second bike and dropped down to 12th, narrowly ahead of Dani Pedrosa, the veteran duo potentially in trouble if summer rain finally hits FP3.