Thanks to a 1:43.415 in FP1 at the PTT Thailand Grand Prix, Jakub Kornfeil (Redox PruestelGP) ends Friday as the fastest man in the Moto3™ class after no one could better the time in the afternoon. Ayumu Sasaki (Petronas Sprinta Racing) came closest as he beat Kornfeil into second place in FP2, with the Japanese rider impressing on his return from injury, but it was only 0.052 between the two. Gabriel Rodrigo (RBA BOE Skull Rider) was P3 on the combined timesheets, and he’s still within a tenth of the top.
After the lightweight class’ first taste of Buriram, it looks tight. Fourth overall was Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse), who leaped up the timesheets in the afternoon and was still just over a tenth off P1. Fabio Di Giannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) was another rider to dramatically improve and he went from P21 to P5 to end the day 0.151 down, just 0.013 ahead of Tatsuki Suzuki (SIC58 Squadra Corse). Malaysian rider Adam Norrodin (Petronas Sprinta Racing) similarly enjoyed a much-improved afternoon session to leap up the combined timesheets from P22 to P7.
Eighth overall was John McPhee (CIP – Green Power) but the bigger headline for the Scot was a crash. Suffering a moment out of Turn 6, McPhee recovered before he then lost the front of his KTM, leaving Vicente Perez (Reale Avintia Academy 77) behind him with nowhere to go. Taken to the Medical Centre for a check up, McPhee was later declared fit.
Meanwhile, Marco Bezzecchi (Redox PruestelGP) was ninth overall after finishing the opening session just behind teammate Kornfeil in P2, and the Italian was a faller at Turn 4 early in the session. But his key Championship rival, points leader Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3), could only manage a time quick enough for P21 on the combined times. The Spaniard is only 0.673 down on Kornfeil at the top but it made for an out-of-character Friday. Can he climb his way up the timesheets ahead of qualifying?
Tony Arbolino (Marinelli Snipers Team) completed the top ten on the opening day at Chang International Circuit after some good form, with 0.322 covering P1 to P10 in the lightweight class. What will Saturday bring? Moto3™ FP3 begins at 09:00 local time (GMT +7) before qualifying at 12:35.
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