Miller tops day one at Le Mans
On a first practice day at Le Mans, which started wet and got wetter still, rain-master Jack Miller – winner of a sodden Assen last year – ended the day topping the time sheets on a morning time.
But the Australian EG-VDS Honda rider was only seventh in the drenched afternoon session, led by Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso; so perhaps the strongest performance on a difficult first day of practice for the French GP came from defending champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda), who was second in both sessions, less than three tenths off Miller.
Marquez apart, Ducatis dominated the wetter afternoon, with the Pramac Ducatis of Danilo Petrucci and Scott Redding third and fourth … though second factory Ducati rider Jorge Lorenzo was a cautious 15th in the afternoon, and only 17th in the morning.
Caution was not inappropriate, however, with better weather forecast for Saturday and race day, and several riders keeping their powder dry.
Among them Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha), eighth overall, two places ahead of team-mate Maverick Vinales.
Former World Superbike champion Sylvain Guintoli, substituting for the injured Alex Rins on the Ecstar Suzuki, made a cuatious MotoGP return, ending up 20th overall out of 23.
Similar conditions for Moto2 saw few surprises in the wet afternoon, with Jerez winner Alex Marquez (EG-VDS Kalex) on top, almost a full second clear of Francesco Bagnaia (SKY VR46 Kalex), the pair ousting Yonny Hernandez (AGR Kalex). Points leader Franco Morbidelli (EG-VDS Kalex) was fourth.
On overall times, though, it was Lorenzo Baldassari (Forward Kalex) narrowly ahead of Morbidelli and Bagnaia, with Marquez tenth.
Similar conditions plagued Moto3, with Red Bull KTM wild card Danny Kent leading in the afternoon, until ousted at the end by Jorge Martin (Gresini Honda), whereupon the ex-champion fell off.
On near-dry morning times, seven seconds faster than the afternoon, SIC Honda’s Adam Norrodin was fractionally faster than the KTMs of Nico Antonelli, Andrea Migno and Gabriel Rodrigo, with rookie Marco Bezzecchi (CIP Mahindra) fourth.
French MotoGP FP1 Results
French MotoGP FP2 Results