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2014 Motegi MotoGP Friday Practice

Ahead of the Grand Prix of Japan at Twin Ring Motegi, Andrea Dovizioso said his Ducati GP14 would be competitive at the technical circuit.

The Italian reported he is aggressive on the binders, and Motegi’s layout has some of the hardest braking zones in MotoGP. Plus, Dovi also favors Motegi, considering he earned his only pole of the premier class there in 2010.

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When Friday’s free practice sessions were complete at Motegi – the first race of three back-to-back rounds – Dovizioso was correct about the Desmosedici being competitive. He finished third quickest in the first free practice (FP1), but completely dominated the second free practice (FP2).

In FP2, Dovi would post a 1:45.140 around the 2.983-mile circuit on an extra-soft rear Bridgestone. To put this time into perspective, the Fastest Lap (on qualifying tires) is a 1:44.969, which was posted in 2012 by last year’s Motegi MotoGP winner Jorge Lorenzo.

Dovizioso finished FP2 0.440 of a second ahead of Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Lorenzo, who led FP1. LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl took the third-quickest time, the German a mere 0.057 of a second behind Lorenzo.

“I am very happy because, apart from my fastest lap which I set with a soft tire, I also had a good pace with the medium option. We immediately got off to a good start this morning with the set-up, both regarding the chassis and the electronics, and this enabled me to push hard right from the early laps. Today was a great day but tomorrow I’ll have to try and shave off some more tenths from my lap time,” Dovizioso says.

Finishing fourth was Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedorsa, who “survived a big moment in FP1 when he produced a remarkable stoppie at turn 11, as he hit the brakes going into the corner.”

Pedrosa, who won at Motegi four times across all classes, finished 0.587 of a second behind Dovizioso. The Spaniard was followed by Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi, who finished 0.750 of a second behind Dovizioso, and the current MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez, who finished 0.799 of a second back.

The Repsol Honda pilot Marquez missed his braking market at turn 5 in FP1, and suffered a crash. The 21-year-old Spaniard was unhurt, but this preventing him from starting quick at Motegi, where he can possibly clinch the title.

Rounding out the top 10 were Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing)

Also suffering crashes were Japan’s Hiroshi Aoyama (Drive M7 Aspar), who crashed in FP2 but walked away with minimal damage to the bike, and Hector Barbera (Avintia Racing) who had a smaller wreck. Both riders were unhurt.

The riders return to the Twin Ring Motegi circuit Saturday for two additional free practice sessions ahead of qualifying.

For a preview of the round, visit 2014 Motegi MotoGP Preview.

2014 Motegi MotoGP Free Practice 2 Results (Friday):

1 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team Ducati 305.5 1’45.140
2 99 Jorge LORENZO SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 300.5 1’45.580 0.440 / 0.440
3 6 Stefan BRADL GER LCR Honda MotoGP Honda 307.0 1’45.637 0.497 / 0.057
4 26 Dani PEDROSA SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 306.1 1’45.727 0.587 / 0.090
5 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 302.3 1’45.890 0.750 / 0.163
6 93 Marc MARQUEZ SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 305.4 1’45.939 0.799 / 0.049
7 44 Pol ESPARGARO SPA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 303.2 1’46.041 0.901 / 0.102
8 38 Bradley SMITH GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 301.1 1’46.105 0.965 / 0.064
9 29 Andrea IANNONE ITA Pramac Racing Ducati 302.9 1’46.107 0.967 / 0.002
10 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR Ducati Team Ducati 298.7 1’46.221 1.081 / 0.114
11 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SPA GO&FUN Honda Gresini Honda 302.6 1’46.227 1.087 / 0.006
12 68 Yonny HERNANDEZ COL Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Ducati 302.5 1’46.297 1.157 / 0.070
13 41 Aleix ESPARGARO SPA NGM Forward Racing Forward Yamaha 296.5 1’46.315 1.175 / 0.018
14 8 Hector BARBERA SPA Avintia Racing Ducati 300.8 1’46.571 1.431 / 0.256
15 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA JPN Drive M7 Aspar Honda 298.1 1’47.133 1.993 / 0.562
16 21 Katsuyuki NAKASUGA JPN YAMALUBE Racing Team with YSP Yamaha 301.4 1’47.180 2.040 / 0.047
17 17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Cardion AB Motoracing Honda 290.4 1’47.406 2.266 / 0.226
18 15 Alex DE ANGELIS RSM NGM Forward Racing Forward Yamaha 295.3 1’47.513 2.373 / 0.107
19 45 Scott REDDING GBR GO&FUN Honda Gresini Honda 287.0 1’47.586 2.446 / 0.073
20 69 Nicky HAYDEN USA Drive M7 Aspar Honda 288.0 1’47.975 2.835 / 0.389
21 9 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA Octo IodaRacing Team ART 284.5 1’48.264 3.124 / 0.289
22 63 Mike DI MEGLIO FRA Avintia Racing Avintia 288.0 1’49.105 3.965 / 0.841
23 23 Broc PARKES AUS Paul Bird Motorsport PBM 286.1 1’49.159 4.019 / 0.054
24 70 Michael LAVERTY GBR Paul Bird Motorsport PBM 288.5 1’49.321 4.181 / 0.16