Stefan Bradl stands an excellent chance of finally halting Marc Marquez's charge after leading the combined Friday practice timesheets for the Australian Moto2 Grand Prix at Phillip Island.
New title leader Marquez concluded a dramatic day in 17th, which saw the rookie strike the back of Ratthapark Wilairot after the chequered flag in the morning session. Wilairot then missed FP2 as a result of his injuries, while Marquez returned on the 2011 Suter chassis (having damaged the 2012 version).
Bradl led the morning session, despite a light fall of his own. The Kalex rider then finished third behind Alex de Angelis (MotoBI) and Andrea Iannone (Suter) in a close afternoon session.
Although he didn't improve in the afternoon, Bradl's morning time proved to be 0.427sec better than de Angelis in the afternoon.
Despite his position, Marquez was only 0.825sec behind de Angelis and 1.252sec from Bradl.
Marquez, who has beaten Bradl in the last eight races, holds a one-point title lead with three rounds remaining.
Friday practice (combined):
1. Bradl (Kalex) 1m 34.039s
2. de Angelis (MotoBI) +0.427s
3. Iannone (Suter) +0.529s
4. Corti (Suter) +0.561s
5. Redding (Suter) +0.744s
6. Smith (Tech 3) +0.917s
7. Kallio (Suter) +0.925s
8. Luthi (Suter) +0.930s
9. Pasini (FTR) +0.945s
10. Takahashi (Moriwaki) +1.085s