Autosolar GASGAS Aspar Team’s Jake Dixon completed a Day 1 clean sweep at the Gran Premio Red Bull de España after topping both FP1 and FP2 to sit over two tenths clear of second place Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo). The British rider’s 1:41.646 was three tenths faster than he went on Friday morning too, with Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) slotting into third and 0.363s shy of Dixon’s pace.
Dixon started the weekend on top and the Brit was 0.275 seconds clear of compatriot Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing), as well as the only man to break the 1:42 barrier on Friday morning, setting a 1:41.938.
Third fastest was Fernandez, with Ogura a further spot back in fourth. Dixon did have a run-in with his teammate Albert Arenas, who was fifth, as the two got close for comfort at the exit of Turn 1. Arenas also crashed in the session, rider ok. Cameron Beaubier (American Racing) also crashed, rider ok and P6 in the session.
In the second session of the day, the top 13 riders on the timesheets were able to better their lap times from the cooler morning conditions. Fernandez had gone quickest briefly before Dixon responded towards the closing stages to reclaim top spot from the Spaniard – and it was a time that wouldn’t be beaten before the end of play.
Ogura was fast once again, moving up into third as the Japanese rider proved a consistent threat on Friday. Lowes was fourth in the afternoon, just ahead of teammate Arbolino.
Provisional Q2 places
Dixon, Fernandez, Ogura, Lowes and Arbolino are the top five, and Arenas suffered a small crash at Jorge Lorenzo corner at the end of the day but the Spaniard had a positive outing to finish P6.
Reigning Moto3™ World Champion Pedro Acosta was finding the limits of his Red Bull KTM Ajo machine before firing in a lap good enough for seventh, and the rookie was marginally ahead of Portugal race winner Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team).
The American is P8 ahead of Saturday’s all-important FP3 shootout and just behind him sits the injured Aron Canet (Flexbox HP40), who is riding through the pain barrier as he looks to gain back ground lost on the Algarve. Indonesian GP winner Somkiat Chantra (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia), Cameron Beaubier (American Racing), Fermin Aldeguer (Lightech Speed Up), Bo Bendsneyder (Pertamina Mandalika SAG Team) and World Championship leader Celestino Vietti (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) currently occupy the remaining automatic Q2 places in P11, P12, P13 and P14 respectively… and Vietti will be the first looking for more on Saturday morning in FP3.