Ducati’s Andrea splashed to top spot in the second MotoGP free practice session at Le Mans, leading a Bologna rout in the rain as four of the top-six spots were claimed by Desmosedicis in France this afternoon.
Dovizioso set a 1’41.673 with his last lap and was on schedule to better it but a mistake at the last corner saw him have to settle for a 0.043s advantage over reigning champion Marc Marquez with Danilo Petrucci in third and a further two-tenths in arrears.
Petrucci and Octo Ducati team-mate Scott Redding swapped fastest times for the second half of the session and at one time as the clock ticked down, it looked like a one-two for the squad but Dovizioso had other ideas, taking the lead with a few minutes left.
Marquez made a slow start but steadily built his pace to set a 1’41.716 on his penultimate lap while Petrucci was denied another shot at top spot as his GP17 developed a problem and he had to scoot it up pitlane.
Redding, meanwhile, ended with a flourish and was the last man under the 1’42 barrier for fourth place on the timesheet with Alvaro Bautista - on yet another Ducati - taking sixth place behind Andrea Iannone’s Ecstar Suzuki.
Even though this morning’s session ended dry both Redding and Dovizioso were faster in the wet this afternoon.
This morning’s fastest man Jack Miller, who still leads on combined times as it was dry enough for slicks, finished in seventh. It was not much fun for Yamaha as Maverick Vinales could only muster eighth with Valentino Rossi in tenth place.
In between the M1s was none other than Britain’s Sam Lowes who actually looked comfortable on his Aprilia, setting a 1’42.998. Aleix Espargaro was just behind his team-mate in 11th with Loris Baz 12th.
Cal Crutchlow didn’t perform at all well, ending in 13th place but was substantially better than Dani Pedrosa who was 21st and four seconds off the pace. Johann Zarco ended one place behind Crutchlow with Jorge Lorenzo next along.
Sylvain Guintoli finished in 16th place while Bradley Smith was last and more than six second off the pace.