The premier class got the worst of the conditions on Saturday morning, drops of rain touching the surface of a track that was already ice cold and getting relentlessly blasted by wind. The first victim of the conditions was Jack Miller’s pitboard, which went on a bit of a stroll on the main straight and caused an early red flag in the process. The unusual occurrences continued with Joan Mir taking a tumble on pitlane entry but proceedings quickly resumed once Pramac Ducati and Suzuki retrieved their respective belongings. However, “proceedings” meant barely another couple of minutes, until rain sent the handful of riders who were willing to test the conditions straight back to their garages for most of the remaining 30 minutes.
Johann Zarco had managed to put together a lap in the short window of opportunity and saw his name at the top of the depleted timesheets for much of the session. Pol Espargaro and Franco Morbidelli were the only other men to carry through with an early timed lap. Fabio Quartararo was back in action after a tough Friday but barely got a lap of dry track time before the conditions stopped play.
The only action the patient fans got for the next 20 minutes was KTMs tip-toeing around for a few laps, until the rain was gone and Marc Marquez took the initiative for the final five minutes. He was joined on track by a dozen brave men and robbed once again by Maverick Vinales at the checkered flag. The Yamaha man took the hat-trick of practice sessions ahead of Marquez and Pol Espargaro. Zarco and Miller joined the top five of the strange session, two seconds slower than the two leading Spaniards.
The limited running and unfriendly conditions meant that combined standings from Friday set the line-up for Q2, which comprised of Vinales, Andrea Dovizioso, Cal Crutchlow, Danilo Petrucci, Miller, Marquez, Valentino Rossi, Alex Rins, Morbidelli and Aleix Espargaro.