The intermediate class cannot catch a break – when the rain falls, it turns extra heavy when Moto2 riders hit the track. In rather cold and treacherous conditions, times were quite a way off from Friday pace and there was little hope to find major improvements throughout the session.
While Tom Luthi claimed top position in the early part of FP3, title rival Franco Morbidelli had a tip off in turn twelve in the first handful of laps. After a minor cleaning operation, the Italian was on a mission to catch up with the usual crowd, which meant some two seconds to make up on Luthi. The Swiss rider did try to help by sliding out briefly in turn five halfway through the session but Morbidelli needed no invitation, the Marc VDS rider getting within two tenths of his main rival in the final fifteen minutes.
With the title contenders into the pits, the lead of the session was claimed by Hafizh Syahrin, The Fish living up to his nickname once more to put nearly four tenths into the pursuers. The time stuck until the flag dropped and the Malaysian rider claimed the third practice session.
Luthi and Morbidelli rejoined the action but did not manage any red hot laps, a few late improvers separating them on the timesheets. Luthi saved his second position but the world championship leader was pushed back by Xavier Simeon and Pecco Bagnaia, both riders leaving it very late to make an impression on the top ten.
With Morbidelli dropping back to fifth, another couple of late performers claimed sixth and seventh positions: Sandro Cortese and Tetsuta Nagashima, both six tenths off the leader. Miguel Oliveira was close behind in eighth spot. It looked like more of the same struggle for Mattia Pasini for much of the session but the Italian finally put a decent run together in the final minutes of FP3 to climb into ninth.
Alex Marquez might have look like the man to take the fight to Luthi early this morning, until he was thrown off in tricky turn three in the final handful of minutes. The Spaniard failed to improve in the latter half of the session and dropped back to complete the top ten as the final rider within a second of Syahrin.
|12||97||Xavi VIERGE||Tech 3||2'07.281||1.118||0.019|
|14||37||Augusto FERNANDEZ||Speed Up||2'07.378||1.215||0.010|
|15||87||Remy GARDNER||Tech 3||2'07.559||1.396||0.181|
|16||89||Khairul Idham PAWI||Kalex||2'07.911||1.748||0.352|
|17||24||Simone CORSI||Speed Up||2'07.940||1.777||0.029|