2017 Silverstone MotoGP FP3 Result: Zarco Times It Right In Tricky Conditions

After the rain comes the... slowly drying track. Despite the Moto3 session showing that slick tyres were an option on the damp British circuit, the premier class was cautious in the tricky conditions, both slicks and wets getting trialled for an outlap or so, while even more riders decided to just sit it out until the track improved further.

Valentino Rossi, Johann Zarco and Jack Miller decided to be the test dummies on slick tyres in the first ten minutes, with the rest of the grid deciding there was more to lose than win in the given conditions. Just as they pitted, the factory Honda duo picked up the task of entertaining the spectators by doing a run of their own.

Things livened up in the final twenty minutes, most bikes lapping around, and riders got even braver in the final ten minutes, several attempts at a soft slick rear suggesting overly optimistic thoughts of changing the Q2 order. Conditions were definitely improving towards the end of the session, Johann Zarco sneaking in some red sectors on his very last lap to get within a second of Friday’s best time.

Zarco was unconcerned with the conditions – to Herve Poncharal’s discomfort - and put in the most laps in the session to lead FP3. The Frenchman and his teammate, Jonas Folger, where amongst the only three riders (together with Bradley Smith) to improve on their Friday times, although it made no difference to the cast of the upcoming Q2 production.

Maverick Viñales finished second, ahead of Folger – who looked to have recovered from the stomach bug that hindered him on Friday. Andrea Dovizioso only graced us with his presence in the final twenty minutes but showed good speed to go fourth in the session.

Danilo Petrucci got over some of the issues that caused him to have a rather anonymous Friday and ended the session fifth, ahead of still the fastest man of the weekend, Cal Crutchlow. Marc Marquez was another early leader of FP3 but the Spaniard and his medium tyre combination dropped back to seventh position.

Pol Espargaro finished eighth, only two hundredths of a second behind Marquez, with Dani Pedrosa a further tenth behind. Much like on the combined standings, Scott Redding completed the top ten, the British rider followed closely by Rossi. The Italian won’t have to worry about Q1 either, still placing second on the combined standings.

Aleix Espargaro’s karting injury meant that the Spaniard opted to sit out the session in the confidence that his FP2 time was enough to ensure his Q2 spot. And so it was, the Aprilia rider fourth overall, behind Crutchlow, Rossi and Viñales. Behind him in the combined standings were Marquez, Jorge Lorenzo, Zarco, brother Pol, Dovizioso and Redding.

The likes of Andrea Iannone, Alex Rins, Petrucci and Pedrosa were probably most unhappy with the weather, all of them having to go through Q1.

Results:

Pos. Num. Rider Bike Time Gap 1st Prev.
1 5 Johann ZARCO Yamaha 2'01.734    
2 25 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 2'01.877 0.143 0.143
3 94 Jonas FOLGER Yamaha 2'02.088 0.354 0.211
4 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 2'02.208 0.474 0.120
5 9 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 2'02.287 0.553 0.079
6 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 2'02.318 0.584 0.031
7 93 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 2'02.513 0.779 0.195
8 44 Pol ESPARGARO KTM 2'02.530 0.796 0.017
9 26 Dani PEDROSA Honda 2'02.602 0.868 0.072
10 45 Scott REDDING Ducati 2'02.818 1.084 0.216
11 46 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 2'02.852 1.118 0.034
12 43 Jack MILLER Honda 2'02.871 1.137 0.019
13 99 Jorge LORENZO Ducati 2'02.946 1.212 0.075
14 42 Alex RINS Suzuki 2'02.965 1.231 0.019
15 53 Tito RABAT Honda 2'03.029 1.295 0.064
16 38 Bradley SMITH KTM 2'03.187 1.453 0.158
17 8 Hector BARBERA Ducati 2'03.352 1.618 0.165
18 76 Loris BAZ Ducati 2'03.362 1.628 0.010
19 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati 2'03.757 2.023 0.395
20 17 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 2'03.798 2.064 0.041
21 29 Andrea IANNONE Suzuki 2'03.919 2.185 0.121
22 22 Sam LOWES Aprilia 2'04.242 2.508 0.323
  41 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia      

 

Round Number: 
12
2017
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