Britain’s Bradley Smith got off to a blazing start in practice for the 125cc Spanish GP here at Jerez this weekend by snatching provisional pole on his Aspar Aprilia in the opening session.
The 18-year-old Smith has the satisfaction of beating his team-mate, the Spaniard Julian Simon, by 0.304s on the 2.75-mile circuit, and will be looking for his first podium of the year here.
The championship leader, the 19-year-old Italian Andrea Iannone (Aprilia) finished third fastest, 0.666 seconds slower than Smith.
Youngest ever grand prix winner Scott Redding also performed strongly, his 1m 49.131s lap on the Blusens Aprilia making him seventh fastest.
Danny Webb, who led last week’s Japanese race before tyre problems slowed him, put his Degraaf Aprilia in tenth place, 1.936s off pole.
But GP newcomer Matt Hoyle could only finish 30th fastest, a massive 7.935s off the pace, on the Chinese-backed Haojue.
For the first time in three races this year, the MotoGP circus looks set to enjoy a fine and dry weekend at Jerez.