After a more challenging and damp start in Indonesia, FP2 came with a clear sky and almost fully dry track – except for a damp patch at turn 2, causing some trouble in Moto2. The next challenge to come was the scorching heat but that didn’t stop fast improvements being made on the timesheets. Although Fabio Quartararo got off on the wrong foot, with a mechanical issue with barely two laps on the board and some missed track time, the Frenchman turned things around to pick up the lead in the final couple of minutes of FP2. It was a much needed boost for Yamaha overall, with Franco Morbidelli joining his teammate in the top 2, only separated by three hundredths of a second. Johann Zarco also saw his name at the top on a couple of occasions throughout the session before settling for third, ahead of teammate Jorge Martin.
Enea Bastianini scored a solid top five, although he closed the session with a pretty rapid crash, while Jack Miller added a fourth consecutive Ducati to the line-up in sixth place. Aleix Espargaro was the sole Aprilia representative, ahead of the factory KTMs of Brad Binder and Miguel Oliveira, while Alex Rins saved a top 10 at the very last moment. With the top 10 positions covered by half a second, Andrea Dovizioso missed out by another two tenths, while Fabio Di Giannantonio was top rookie in 14th position.
There was a touch of drama lower down the timesheets – unusually low for Joan Mir, Pecco Bagnaia and the Repsol Hondas. All four of them left it late to improve their times and yellow flags ended up playing a part in their lowly placements. FP1 leader Pol Espargaro looked pretty good at the beginning of the session but dropped to 19th in the closing stages, ahead of Joan Mir, who seemed to struggle a bit more and Pecco Bagnaia, who moved up and down the timesheets before his time attack was halted by yellow flags. After a session scattered with hairy moments at turns 1, 7 and 16, Marc Marquez ended up being the reason for one of those late yellow flags, the Spaniard suffering a fast tumble at turn 11 while on a hot lap and dropped to 22nd on the timesheets. The quartet will not be performing a rain dance on Saturday morning.
|14||49||Fabio Di Giannantonio||Ducati||1:32.418||0.81||0.074|