Alex Lowes’ Factory Yamaha team have drawn first blood at this year’s Suzuka Eight-Hours, topping the opening free practice session with a 2’07.540 to end two-tenths up on the MuSASHI Honda crew which stars Jack Miller.
The works Honda team put in a 2’07.758 to take them well clear of Josh Brookes and Sylvain Guintoli in third place on the Yoshimura Suzuki squad, which ended in third on a 2’08.321.
FCC TSR, which features Moto2’s Dominque Aegerter and MotoGP veteran Randy De Puniet, were in fourth place on a 2’08.342 with Leon Haslam’s Kawasaki Team Green in fifth ending with a 2’08.430.
Christian Iddon and the BM2 Motorrad93 team finished in seventh place, one behind the Honda SuzukaRacing outfit with Dan Linfoot and Ryuichi Kiyonari putting their Moriwaki Motul Fireblade in eighth. World Endurance regulars YART completed the top ten behind S-Pulse Dream racing.