Viñales used FP1 to reproduce his strong form at COTA from last year. Though the forceful thrust of the MotoGP bikes made the dust fly everywhere in the first free practice session, the 23-year-old was quick to show a competitive pace. He worked diligently on his bike’s settings throughout the morning and put his head down in the final stages. He earned third place in the FP1 results, with a 2’06.257s best time and a 0.727s margin to the top.
Feeling encouraged by his strong start in FP1, the Spaniard gave another strong performance during the second 45-minute session. Having bettered his bike, he soon dropped a 2’07s lap and went on to secure third place in the final minute, setting a 2’04.863s lap, 0.264s from the front.
Rossi stuck to his plan to get a top-10 time in FP1. He showed a good pace in the morning and got into a solid rhythm. The Italian steadily dropped his times and frequently posted provisional top-3 laps. He ultimately slotted into second with a 2’05.926s lap, directly ahead of his teammate, and held on to this position with a 0.396s margin to first place.
The nine-time World Champion also had a productive session in the afternoon. Once again pushing hard, he worked on fine-tuning his bike’s balance, the tyres and the electronics. Finding himself in eighth place, with six minutes to spare, Rossi headed back out to put the hammer down. He set a 2’04.958s on his penultimate lap to ultimately take fourth place, 0.359s from first.
The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP teammates’ FP2 results earned them the third and fourth place respectively in the combined times, ahead of tomorrow’s sessions.