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Aragon MotoGP: Rossi closes in on Marquez at end of FP1

Marc Marquez holds a considerable advantage for much of FP1 at Aragon; Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales make late gains.
For much of MotoGP FP1 at Motorland Aragon, Marc Marquez held the kind of advantage that suggested a dominant weekend lay ahead. Yet Valentino Rossi offered late hope, reducing the Spaniard's advantage to just 0.18s at the close of Friday morning.

Marquez showed considerable speed with Michelin's hard option rear tyre mid-way through FP1, with his fastest time of 1m 48.830s coming on the tenth of his 17 laps. Fast from the off, the championship leader's fastest time was 0.8s than the next best man.

Unable to better that time in the session's second half, Marquez's advantage soon came down. First Andrea Dovizioso (+0.348s) went close, before late laps from Rossi (second) and Maverick Viñales (third) closed the deficit.

Behind Dovizioso, Jorge Lorenzo was fifth after an early scare with what is believed to be a bad rear tyre. The Majorcan had a heart stopping out-of-the-seat moment through the fast final turn at the beginning of the session, but returned with a time 0.743s back of Marquez's best.

Ducati team boss Davide Tardozzi reported Andrea Iannone was in considerable discomfort. Nonetheless, the Italian was sixth after completing 17 laps. A decision on whether he continues this weekend with a healing fractured vertebrae will be made before FP2.

Danilo Petrucci was seventh fastest with Aleix Espargaro eighth. Brother Pol was a place behind in ninth, with Cal Crutchlow tenth.

Stand in riders Alex Lowes (17th) and Nicky Hayden (20th) both clocked up a considerable amount of laps as they become accustomed to the 3.1-mile circuit on new machines.

There were falls for both Yonny Hernandez and Tito Rabat at the treacherous turn two.

FP1:
1. Marc Marquez
2. Valentino Rossi
3. Maverick Viñales
4. Andrea Dovizioso
5. Jorge Lorenzo
6. Andrea Iannone
7. Danilo Petrucci
8. Aleix Espargaro
9. Pol Espargaro
10. Cal Crutchlow
11. Dani Pedrosa
12. Scott Redding
13. Stefan Bradl
14. Hector Barbera
15. Tito Rabat
16. Eugene Laverty
17. Alex Lowes
18. Alvaro Bautista
19. Yonny Hernandez
20. Nicky Hayden
21. Loris Baz

CLICK HERE for full results.





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Danilo Petrucci at Jerez MotoGP Test (pic: Steve English)
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