Once temperatures ticked well over the 30 degree mark, the focus from the premier class swiftly moved from quick times to race setup for the similarly red hot race on Sunday. The Petronas Yamaha squad stole the spotlight as far as the timesheets were concerned, Fabio Quartararo topping most of the session, before Franco Morbidelli put in some new rubber and attacked his teammate’s time. The Italian ended up quickest by three tenths of a second but even his best time was not quick enough to challenge the top 10 from FP1.
Quartararo in second position was the only rider to improve his time from FP1 but was still left provisionally out of Q2 places. The Frenchman will find comfort in the more sensible weather predicted for FP3 and the solid race pace he showed throughout his runs. Rookie Brad Binder continues to excel, joining the top three in FP2 and only a tenth off the Petronas boys. Marc Marquez showed pretty decent pace too, although his runs were slightly disrupted by losing the front at turn two halfway through the session, joining the crash list opened by his brother/teammate earlier in FP2.
Pol Espargaro was the second KTM in the top five, with Cal Crutchlow, Maverick Vinales, Johann Zarco, Andrea Dovizioso and Pecco Bagnaia completing a top ten covered by half a second. Iker Lecuona continued his good run with a 12th position that was only seven tenths off in the tricky conditions, while Danilo Petrucci climbed a few spots in the ranking to 13th place, notably ahead of both Suzuki machines. Valentino Rossi in 20th position finished the afternoon one second down on, presumably, his future teammate.