Andrea Dovizioso topped FP2 at Brno on Friday to give the factory Ducati rider plenty of positives to take into qualifying tomorrow.

The Italian, who has won twice this season on the GP17 with back-to-back triumphs at Mugello and Catalunya, was four tenths ahead of Tech 3 Yamaha’s Jonas Folger in the dry afternoon session.

Dovizioso is right in the hunt for the MotoGP title in third place, only one point behind Maverick Vinales and six adrift of championship leader Marc Marquez at the half-way point of the season.

Ducati debuted a radical new ‘downforce’ fairing on Friday and also confirmed Dovizioso had used a new, slightly modified swingarm during free practice.

“I’m very happy about today, also this morning, because we tried both tyres – medium and soft – so our position this morning is also really good, and the feeling was also good,” said Dovizioso, who was 13th fastest in the wet morning session.

“In the afternoon we confirmed our speed in this track and that is so important, especially when you start today when it is a little damp in practice. So it’s important to start with a good speed and you are able to work on the details.

“For sure, the lap times this afternoon is not the reality because I think many riders did not put the soft tyre, but anyway I think our lap time is quite fast for the conditions of today, so I think we have to be happy.”

Having not joined team-mate Jorge Lorenzo in trying the new Ducati fairing, the Italian was asked if he had any other new parts today. The Italian was playing his cards close to his chest but it was later confirmed that he had a new swingarm.

“We tried something [the swingarm] but the conditions weren’t easy to understand exactly the difference, so we have to work more tomorrow.

“About the fairing, still I don’t know [if I will use it on Saturday] because we have to analyse the data from today, from Jorge, and take a decision for tomorrow.But I don’t know if we will use this weekend or the next weekend."

 

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