By the time the premier class took to the track for the second time today, Brno was baking hot, with the tarmac sizzling at 50 degrees and prompting plenty of hard tyres to come out of their covers. For most of the session it looked like a Honda washout: Marc Marquez wasted no time in setting the fastest time from the off, Pedrosa soaked in the sunshine and surfed his way into the top two on used tyres and Cal Crutchlow joined them soon after to make it a Honda top three.
The monopoly was broken as soon as the final time attack unfolded but Pedrosa put any attempts to steal the headlines to rest and posted the first and only 1:55 time of the weekend. Danilo Petrucci trailed the Spaniard by a tenth of a second while Alvaro Bautista added another Ducati to the mix in third position.
Hafizh Syahrin also shone, literally and metaphorically, in the familiar conditions and climbed all the way into an impressive fourth position as top Yamaha. Andrea Dovizioso led proceedings only briefly and was demoted to fifth by only two tenths of a second – a time he posted on a hard rear tyre rather than the leader’s soft. In familiar fashion, Maverick Viñales took some time to warm up but finally joined the top six halfway through session. Colleagues Valentino Rossi and Johann Zarco left it even later to make an impression and the Italian eventually snatched seventh position, half a second off the leader, while Zarco was pushed back to ninth by Tito Rabat.
Marquez once again did not bother trying on new shoes for the final time attack and minded his own race pace business on used hard tyres. That saw him slip down the rankings but holding on to that precious final top ten position ahead of the Suzuki duo of Andrea Iannone and Alex Rins. That six tenth gap to his teammate should not be much of an issue once the Spaniard tries on some new rubber on Saturday.
After the early top three placement, Crutchlow fell back to 14th, behind pal Jack Miller and ahead of Jorge Lorenzo. The Spaniard started his afternoon unusually on soft rubber but dropped back to 15th once swapping it for a hard-medium combination, over a second slower than Pedrosa.