Marc Marquez started the German Grand Prix weekend at the head of the times as he streaked to the fastest tour in opening practice at the Sachsenring.
The Honda ace-who remains unbeaten at the circuit since making his premier class bow in 2013-was immediately on the pace as he headed to the peak of the leaderboard in the early-goings, a 1:21.660s ultimately enough to keep him on top throughout as improvements for his rivals were few-and-far between following the opening third of the test.
Marquez instead elected to focus on a race simulation for the remainder of the 45-minute session as he looks to score his eighth straight premier class win at the German venue.
Series leader Fabio Quartararo ended up second quickest despite a nasty-looking crash at Turn 12 mid-way through the session, the Yamaha man losing the front of his M1 on entry to the right-hander and sliding off into the gravel.
He fortunately escaped without injury despite seemingly being concerned about his shoulder and hand in the immediate aftermath of the incident, the Frenchman heading back out later on his spare machine to post an effort 0.168s slower than Marquez’s benchmark.
Takaaki Nakagami and Pol Espargaro made it three Honda’s in the top four as the RC213-V looks to continue its strong form at the Sachsenring, Quartararo denying the marque a 1-2-3 result in FP1 with his late improvement.
Aleix Espargaro rounded out the top five for Aprilia, while Jack Miller was the highest classified Ducati runner in sixth.
Alex Rins made a solid MotoGP comeback after missing the Catalan GP through injury a fortnight ago in seventh as the first of the Suzuki’s, with reigning MotoGP world champion team-mate Joan Mir ninth overall-the two GSX-RR’s sandwiching Pramac’s Johann Zarco.
Maverick Vinales completed the top ten on the second factory Yamaha, Francesco Bagnaia just behind him in 11th on the other official Ducati Desmosedici.
KTM started out the German event in quiet fashion with Miguel Oliviera its top runner in 12th, while Brad Binder was unable to breach the top 20.
Jorge Martin was 19th after an early crash at Turn 12 in a similar vein to Quartararo’s later get-off, while Pol Espargaro also suffered a spill prior to his strong time late on as he went down at Turn 3 just moments after Martin had his own accident.
Luca Marini was best rookie on his Avintia-run Ducati in 13th overall, the Italian just edging 15th placed countryman and team-mate Enea Bastianini for the accolade.
GERMAN MOTOGP, SACHSENRING – FREE PRACTICE (1) RESULTS
|1||Marc Marquez||SPA||Repsol Honda (RC213V)||1’21.660s||4/25||294k|
|2||Fabio Quartararo||FRA||Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1)||+0.168s||13/20||293k|
|3||Takaaki Nakagami||JPN||LCR Honda (RC213V)||+0.276s||7/22||291k|
|4||Pol Espargaro||SPA||Repsol Honda (RC213V)||+0.350s||9/19||294k|
|5||Aleix Espargaro||SPA||Aprilia Gresini (RS-GP)||+0.380s||17/19||293k|
|6||Jack Miller||AUS||Ducati Team (GP21)||+0.391s||9/22||296k|
|7||Alex Rins||SPA||Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)||+0.416s||19/19||292k|
|8||Johann Zarco||FRA||Pramac Ducati (GP21)||+0.488s||22/22||296k|
|9||Joan Mir||SPA||Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR)||+0.512s||20/22||292k|
|10||Maverick Vinales||SPA||Monster Yamaha (YZR-M1)||+0.593s||14/25||292k|
|11||Francesco Bagnaia||ITA||Ducati Team (GP21)||+0.600s||14/25||295k|
|12||Miguel Oliveira||POR||Red Bull KTM (RC16)||+0.664s||14/22||293k|
|13||Luca Marini||ITA||Sky VR46 Avintia Ducati (GP19)*||+0.704s||19/22||291k|
|14||Franco Morbidelli||ITA||Petronas Yamaha (YZR-M1)||+0.721s||13/24||289k|
|15||Enea Bastianini||ITA||Avintia Ducati (GP19)*||+0.817s||20/20||294k|
|16||Alex Marquez||SPA||LCR Honda (RC213V)||+0.877s||23/24||293k|
|17||Lorenzo Salvadori||ITA||Aprilia Gresini (RS-GP)*||+0.952s||19/21||290k|
|18||Danilo Petrucci||ITA||KTM Tech3 (RC16)||+0.986s||12/23||290k|
|19||Jorge Martin||SPA||Pramac Ducati (GP21)*||+1.018s||8/18||297k|
|20||Valentino Rossi||ITA||Petronas Yamaha (YZR-M1)||+1.031s||22/23||290k|
|21||Iker Lecuona||SPA||KTM Tech3 (RC16)||+1.068s||4/24||293k|
|22||Brad Binder||RSA||Red Bull KTM (RC16)||+1.309s||20/23||295k|