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MotoGP Le Mans: Smith pushes out Lorenzo, ends Friday fastest

The Englishman tops a MotoGP session for the first time since Barcelona, 2014 despite a late crash in Friday's FP2
Bradley Smith topped a MotoGP practice session for the first time since June, 2014 by setting the Friday pace at Le Mans for the fifth round of the MotoGP series.

Smith ended the session 0.19s clear of Jorge Lorenzo in second as both men dipped under Marc Marquez's year old circuit record.

The Tech 3 Yamaha man was comfortably sitting inside the top five before going fastest with less than ten minutes remaining when using the softer rear tyre.

A spill at the tight turn 13 followed as he fell when following Aleix Espargaro, who also went down. In a bizarre end to the session the pair crashed moments after Pol Espargaro went down at turn nine.

All of this commotion somewhat took the attention away from Lorenzo and third placed Andrea Dovizioso, who both consistently cut laps in the 1m 33s barrier.

Cal Crutchlow made it two British riders inside the top four with another promising display while Marc Marquez put his morning issues behind him to finish the day in fifth.

Marquez spent the end of the session testing the durability and speed of Bridgestone's softer rear tyre while the 'Factory' Yamaha of Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi turned their attentions to the medium.

Indeed Bridgestone reported that Smith had been happy with the medium's performance before he changed to the soft late on.

Usually one to build his way into a weekend, Rossi will be more than content with the sixth best time, a place ahead of the returning Dani Pedrosa.

Sitting as low as 15th early on, Pedrosa steadily made his way through the top ten to sit as high as third with 15 minutes to run. The Spaniard was eventually pushed back to seventh.

Pol led brother Aleix as the Espargaros finished the session in eighth and ninth while Yonny Hernandez ended the session tenth. Andrea Iannone, another man riding injured, took to the track after a pain killing injection and ended the session eleventh.

Behind Jack Miller outperformed Scott Redding in 13th.

Free Practice 2:
1. Bradley Smith
2. Jorge Lorenzo
3. Andrea Dovizioso
4. Cal Crutchlow
5. Marc Marquez
6. Valentino Rossi
7. Dani Pedrosa
8. Pol Espargaro
9. Aleix Espargaro
10. Yonny Hernandez
11. Andrea Iannone
12. Maverick Viñales
13. Jack Miller
14. Scott Redding
15. Stefan Bradl
16. Danilo Petrucci
17. Nicky Hayden
18. Hector Barbera
19. Loris Baz
20. Mike Di Meglio
21. Karel Abraham
22. Alvaro Bautista
23. Eugene Laverty
24. Alex De Angelis
25. Marco Melandri

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Smith, Michelin tyre test day, Sepang MotoGP tests, February 2015
Crutchlow, Australian MotoGP 2016
Reddng, Petrucci, Smith Australian MotoGP 2016
Redding, Petrucci Australian MotoGP 2016
Barbera, Smith Australian MotoGP 2016
Hayden, Miller Australian MotoGP 2016
Redding, Australian MotoGP 2016
Redding, Australian MotoGP 2016
Pol Espargaro, Australian MotoGP 2016
Rossi, Australian MotoGP 2016
Rossi, Australian MotoGP 2016
Bradl, Hayden, Australian MotoGP 2016
Lorenzo, Australian MotoGP 2016
Redding, Australian MotoGP 2016
Dovizioso, Australian MotoGP 2016
Lorenzo, Australian MotoGP 2016
Rossi, Australian MotoGP 2016
Hayden, Redding Australian MotoGP 2016

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May 15, 2015 3:52 PM
Last Edited 433 days ago

Good work from Smith, job well done. I noted that, looked for the usual suspects, looked for fellow Aussie, Jack (who is mid-field, also improving) and then I thought 'Oh no, the Brits are going to be a bit loud on crash now...' Jokes aside, you are doing fantastic in superbike, and now you're knocking at the top in MotoGP as well. It's been a long time coming, but it's nice to see. [edit] PS, good work by Danny Kent as well, outstanding.

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