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Moto2: Espargaro beats Brits in Friday practice

15 June 2012

Pol Espargaro put the controversy surrounding the Marc Marquez incident in Catalunya behind him by leading both Friday practice sessions for the British Moto2 Grand Prix.

The Pons Kalex rider moved head of British stars Scott Redding and Bradley Smith at the end of the dry afternoon session.

Earlier in the day, Espargaro had been fastest from Smith in the wet morning practice.

Marc VDS Kalex rider Redding, a former British Grand Prix winner in the 125cc class, led for most of the afternoon before Espargaro pushed 0.509s clear on his penultimate lap.

Happiest of the leading trio was undoubtedly Tech 3 star Smith, who has endured a tough start to his second Moto2 season but heads into Saturday confident of his pace in both the wet and dry.

Marquez was fourth best for Repsol Suter, with Johann Zarco (MotoBI) and Alex de Angelis (Suter) the other riders within one-second of Espargaro.

Moto2 rookie Gino Rea made use of his prior Silverstone knowledge to claim twelfth place on his Gresini-run Suter, completing a promising opening day for the Brits.

Championship leader Thomas Luthi fell from his Interwetten Suter in the afternoon and was left in 19th place having completed just nine laps, compared with the 17 or 18 by the session leaders.

Zarco's team-mate Eric Granado completed his first day at a grand prix in 33rd place, ahead of only lady racer Elena Rosell. Brazilian Granado recently turned 16 and is thus old enough to compete at world championship level.

Friday practice (2):

1. Pol Espargaro SPA (Kalex) 2m 8.826s
2. Scott Redding GBR (Kalex) 2m 9.335s
3. Bradley Smith GBR (Tech 3) 2m 9.533s
4. Marc Marquez SPA (Suter) 2m 9.553s
5. Johann Zarco FRA (MotoBI) 2m 9.718s
6. Alex De Angelis RSM (Suter) 2m 9.794s
7. Toni Elias SPA (Suter) 2m 10.052s
8. Claudio Corti ITA (Kalex) 2m 10.085s
9. Andrea Iannone ITA (Speed Up) 2m 10.096s
10. Simone Corsi ITA (FTR) 2m 10.343s
11. Mike Di Meglio FRA (Speed Up) 2m 10.670s
12. Gino Rea GBR (Suter) 2m 10.682s
13. Mika Kallio FIN (Kalex) 2m 10.749s
14. Axel Pons SPA (Kalex) 2m 10.789s


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