Aleix Espargaro continued the rapid form that saw him take pole position a fortnight ago in Assen, setting fastest time at the Sachsenring in free practice one ahead of Sunday’s MotoGP German Grand Prix.
The young Spaniard ensured it was a Yamaha 1-2-3 by beating factory riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi into the supporting positions, being ahead of Lorenzo to the tune of 0.3 seconds by session’s end. It was a crash-strewn morning with Tech 3’s Bradley Smith book-ending the 45 minutes with two accidents, thankfully escaping unscathed. There was also a shock for championship leader Marc Marquez when he went down at turn three a handful of minutes into the day, seemingly winding himself and suffering some pain from his back according to Repsol Honda communication manager Livio Suppo.
Broc Parkes fell right at the chequered flag without injury, while there was a big moment for Nicky Hayden that saw him brush the barriers and escaping with minor scrapes.
Marquez recovered to what, for him, is a lowly 6th place behind Pol Espargaro and Alvaro Bautista, with Stefan Bradl and Dani Pedrosa lending credence to the impression that Honda is somewhat off the pace of the Yamaha bikes at this early point of the weekend by finishing just 7th and 8th.
Yonny Hernandez impressed again for Pramac, ending the morning 10th behind team-mate Andrea Iannone.
CLASSIFICATION – FP1 – German Grand Prix – MotoGP – 11th July 2014
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