The man who dominated the 2017 MotoGP preseason and the opening round in Qatar, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Maverick Vinales, has topped the time sheets once again.Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Maverick Vinales led both free practices on Friday ahead of 2017 Argentina MotoGP. The YZR-M1 pilot finished with a best lap of 1:39.477, which became a new fastest lap at Termas de Rio Hondo.
The 22-year-old Spaniard finished 0.301 of a second ahead of three-time MotoGP Champion Marc Marquez, and 0.403 of a second ahead of Pull&Bear Aspar Team’s Karel Abraham.The Czech rider Abraham impressed, and earned third by a mere 0.042 of a seocond ahead of teammate Alvaro Bautista on the other Independent Team Ducati Desmosedici. Two more Ducati prototypes followed, but not factory GP17 bikes; Octo Pramac Racing’s Danilo Petrucci finished fifth, ahead of Reale Avintia Racing’s Loris Baz.Rounding out the top 10 were 2016 Brno and Phillip Island victor Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda), the rookie Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) and Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar).As for the other factory riders, Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa, who suffered a low-side crash, finished 13th. Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso was 14th, and nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi in 16th—1.054 seconds off the pace.Ducati Team newbie Jorge Lorenzo continues to struggle with the GP17, the five-time World Champion finishing 18th, 1.122 of a second off the pace.Rain is in the forecast for Saturday’s final free practice sessions and qualifying.
2017 Argentina MotoGP Free Practice Results, Friday Overall
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.