The paddock’s return to Barcelona was greeted with a light and innocent cloud cover and the first session went to one of the home favourites, with Aleix Espargaro demoting Franco Morbidelli from the top of the timesheets in the final couple of minutes of FP1. The Italian settled for second by two hundredths of a second, while Pol Espargaro also made a great start on home soil to climb into third. Maverick Viñales and Johann Zarco completed the top five, with championship leader Fabio Quartararo sixth and four tenths off the lead.
Miguel Oliveira was the lead KTM in seventh position while newly renewed teammate Brad Binder finished 20th. Reigning world champion Joan Mir and the Ducati duo of Jack Miller and Pecco Bagnaia rounded out the top 10 positions, with Takaaki Nakagami missing out by four hundredths of a second. Jorge Martin had a trouble-free return from injury to finish 12th, ahead of Marc Marquez, who inadvertently gave him a little tow to help improve his time. While the Pramac rider makes a long-awaited return, compatriot Alex Rins headed to the surgeon’s table after he crashed while cycling the track on Thursday and injured his arm.