Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso mastered the wet conditions to come out on top during the opening day of free practice for the San Marino MotoGP.

The Italian rider's lap of 1m 49.195s was a huge 1.61s ahead of Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa as the Ducati again proved its competitiveness in wet conditions.

Dovizioso, who had been third fastest in FP1 behind Yonny Hernandez and Marc Marquez, expects dry weather on Saturday and Sunday but was naturally pleased with his pace-setting performance on day one.

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"It was a really good start today and it's always nice to be first. It looks like Saturday and Sunday will be dry but in any case we made a really good job today because the grip is really low and it is very difficult to get rhythm," Dovizioso said.

"I made a crash during the out lap this afternoon but we understood the pressure wasn't perfect, so we tried a different pressure in the final run and I was able to get the feeling and rhythm and make a really good lap time.

"I was able to go a little bit faster but there was no reason to take the risk because it is only Friday. We didn't have experience of this track in the wet to say now that it [grip level] is different," he added.

"The feeling is like there is a lot of rubber in the asphalt; when everybody crashed it was on the perfect line and the grip everywhere is not the best. I was able to manage in the last run when we changed the pressure."

Dovizioso came off when he was running the soft option Bridgestone rubber but noted an improvement from the tyres towards the end of the session.

The Ducati star also believes the character of the Desmosedici remains the same regardless of whether the conditions are wet or dry.

"I crashed on the out lap on the soft so the grip is not the best; it depends on how much water there is because at the end the water was a little bit lower and my front tyre started to work a little," he said.

"The character is the same [in the wet] but I believe like in the dry we have a little bit more grip from the beginning and in the wet it makes a bigger effect so this is the reason why we are always competitive in the wet. This is my opinion, but I don't know if the engineer is thinking the same!"