Patches of damp track were still pretty obvious around the circuit by the time the intermediate class took its turn to prepare for battle but the dry line was nice and wide and ready to welcome slick tyres. However, it was not exactly harmless either as Luca Marini demonstrated 15 minutes into the session, when he went down at turn 15.
Keen to avoid more midfield adventures, Alex Marquez quickly claimed top spot on the timesheets, nearing lap record and went unchallenged and with a significant gap for most of the session. Rivals were slowly closing the gap in the later stages of FP1 and it was the familiar sight of Nagashima who deposed him of the lead, after following the world championship leader around the Sepang circuit, to the Spaniard's discontent.
After spending the early part of the session over one second down on his main title rival, Brad Binder recovered ground and climbed to second, while Marquez settled for third, half a second off the lead at the checkered flag. With Tom Luthi and Jorge Navarro closely following him, all the title hopefuls started off their weekend in close proximity.
After his early spill, Marini recovered to join the top six, ahead of Marcel Schrotter and Xavi Vierge. The Italian duo of Marco Bezzecchi and Mattia Pasini rounded out the top ten, although over a second slower than the leader. The likes of Iker Lecuona, Remy Gardner or Augusto Fernandez narrowly missed out on the top ten, while Jorge Martin and Lorenzo Baldassarri were knocking on the doors of the top 15.
|5||9||Jorge NAVARRO||Speed Up||2'06.924||0.624||0.005|
|12||62||Stefano MANZI||MV Agusta||2'07.386||1.086||0.004|
|21||21||Fabio DI GIANNANTONIO||Speed Up||2'07.941||1.641||0.124|
|27||77||Dominique AEGERTER||MV Agusta||2'08.627||2.327||0.015|
|30||20||Dimas EKKY PRATAMA||Kalex||2'10.184||3.884||0.531|