Austria MotoGP: Dovizioso tops FP1, problems for Rossi

Andrea Dovizioso led an all-Ducati top three in the first practice session for MotoGP's Austria Grand Prix, as Valentino Rossi's Yamaha had an early failure.

Austria MotoGP: Dovizioso tops FP1, problems for Rossi

Rossi's bike slowed at the end of the main straight less than 10 minutes into the session, his Yamaha reportedly suffering a broken rear sprocket. The Italian was able to continue soon afterwards but ended up only 11th.

With a risk of rain for both FP2 on Friday afternoon and FP3 on Saturday morning, riders put more focus on setting a fast lap in FP1 than usual.

The three Ducati GP18s controlled proceedings early on with Danilo Petrucci, Jorge Lorenzo and Dovizioso all taking turns in first place.

However it was Marc Marquez who led the way with a 1m24.411s before a mid-session lull, nearly four tenths quicker than second-placed Dovizioso.

The Italian started a run 25 minutes into the session which saw him improve his own best time, and consequently close the gap to Marquez on a couple occasions before he eventually took over the lead with a 1m24.295s.

The top two remained unchanged until the final minutes when Dovizioso improved by nearly two tenths, only to be narrowly outpaced by Lorenzo.

However, as the chequered flag fell, Dovizioso lowered the benchmark even further and ended up topping the session with a 1m23.830s.

Lorenzo was 0.215s off the pace in second with Petrucci, nearly half a second off the pace, completing a Ducati 1-2-3.

Marquez was best of the rest in fourth, 0.581s slower than Dovizioso, with Suzuki's Andrea Iannone taking fifth.

Honda duo Dani Pedrosa and Cal Crutchlow were sixth and seventh respectively with Avintia's Tito Rabat bringing a fourth Ducati into the top 10 in eighth.

Yamaha had a low-key session with Johann Zarco only ninth on the Tech 3 bike, closely followed by factory pair Maverick Vinales and Rossi, both more than a second off the pace.

Aleix Espargaro was the top Aprilia in 12th as the sole KTM of Bradley Smith took 15th.

FP1 results:

Pos. # Rider Bike Time Gap
1 4 Italy Andrea Dovizioso  Ducati 1'23.830  
2 99 Spain Jorge Lorenzo  Ducati 1'24.045 0.215
3 9 Italy Danilo Petrucci  Ducati 1'24.320 0.490
4 93 Spain Marc Marquez  Honda 1'24.411 0.581
5 29 Italy Andrea Iannone  Suzuki 1'24.436 0.606
6 26 Spain Dani Pedrosa  Honda 1'24.474 0.644
7 35 United Kingdom Cal Crutchlow  Honda 1'24.491 0.661
8 53 Spain Tito Rabat  Ducati 1'24.676 0.846
9 5 France Johann Zarco  Yamaha 1'24.767 0.937
10 25 Spain Maverick Viñales  Yamaha 1'24.835 1.005
11 46 Italy Valentino Rossi  Yamaha 1'24.884 1.054
12 41 Spain Aleix Espargaro  Aprilia 1'24.904 1.074
13 19 Spain Alvaro Bautista  Ducati 1'24.938 1.108
14 42 Spain Alex Rins  Suzuki 1'24.939 1.109
15 38 United Kingdom Bradley Smith  KTM 1'24.973 1.143
16 30 Japan Takaaki Nakagami  Honda 1'25.011 1.181
17 21 Italy Franco Morbidelli  Honda 1'25.107 1.277
18 43 Australia Jack Miller  Ducati 1'25.184 1.354
19 45 United Kingdom Scott Redding  Aprilia 1'25.354 1.524
20 17 Czech Republic Karel Abraham  Ducati 1'25.541 1.711
21 55 Malaysia Hafizh Syahrin  Yamaha 1'25.594 1.764
22 10 Belgium Xavier Simeon  Ducati 1'25.752 1.922
23 12 Switzerland Thomas Luthi  Honda 1'25.979 2.149
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