Rossi has won more grands prix than any other rider at Montmelo, including premier-class wins in 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2009 - when he overtook Lorenzo at the very final turn.
“It is a great pleasure to ride here in Barcelona. The bike is ok and now we have to wait for tomorrow and try to go a bit faster,” he said.
“The temperature is very high, but for sure we will have to go in the 1m 41s on Saturday.”
Rossi's best Friday lap was a 1m 42.297s, which is already under Dani Pedrosa's race lap record from 2008. The pole record is a 1m 41.186s set in the same year by Casey Stoner, using a qualifying tyre.
The seven time MotoGP champion, who fell after tangling with Alvaro Bautista on the opening lap last time at Mugello, is currently sixth in the world championship with one podium.