French MotoGP: Julian Simon fastest in second 250 free practice

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Julian Simon has recorded the fastest lap in the second 250 practice session in Le Mans this morning.

The Repsol KTM rider knocked half a second off his best qualifying lap from yesterday and was just 0.2sec off Alvaro Bautista’s provisional pole time.

Thomas Luthi was second and it was two KTM’s in the top three finishers with Hiroshi Aoyama third with a best lap of 1:38.948.

China winner Mika Kallio was on the early pace by heading to the top of the timesheets with a 1:40.951 on his KTM.

But after 10 minutes Julian Simon shot to the top with a 1:40.178 then Thomas Luthi was up there with a 1:39.737. Luthi then improved on his time to post a 1:39.628 after a quarter of an hour and Marco Simoncelli slipped into second place with a 1:40.181.

Simon was back at the top again after 25 minutes after recording a 1:39.572, but Mattia Pasini had knocked him off within seconds as he went almost 0.3secs faster. And as Luthi improved his time with a 1:39.338 it was up to Pasini to respond, which he did immediately with a 1:39.166 on his 12th lap out.

Yesterday’s fast man Alvaro Bautista had his best lap of the day after half an hour when he recorded a 1:39.204 to put his Aprilia into second place. And then he shot to the top of the timesheets with 25 minutes remaining with a time of 1:39.042.

Luthi returned to the head of the times after posting a 1:38.921 with nine minutes of the session remaining. And with just seconds remaining Julian Simon was back to the top with his best lap of the session at 1:38.652, which was enough to take the lead place heading to the chequered flag.

Second was Thomas Luthi on his Aprilia with Hiroshi Aoyama third to make it two KTM’s in the top three.

Ireland’s Eugene Laverty will go into this afternoon’s second qualifying session full of confidence. The Blusens.Aprilia rider finished the session in 19th with his best lap recorded at 1:40.672, which was half a second quicker than his qualifying time from yesterday afternoon.

French MotoGP 250 second free practice results:

1 Julian SIMON SPA Repsol KTM 250cc KTM 1'38.652
2 Thomas LUTHI SWI Emmi - Caffe Latte APRILIA 1'38.826
3 Hiroshi AOYAMA JPN Red Bull KTM 250 KTM 1'38.948
4 Alvaro BAUTISTA SPA Mapfre Aspar Team APRILIA 1'39.042
5 Manuel POGGIALI RSM Campetella Racing GILERA 1'39.099
6 Mattia PASINI ITA Polaris World APRILIA 1'39.166
7 Mika KALLIO FIN Red Bull KTM 250 KTM 1'39.240
8 Marco SIMONCELLI ITA Metis Gilera GILERA 1'39.310
9 Aleix ESPARGARO SPA Lotus Aprilia APRILIA 1'39.333
10 Hector FAUBEL SPA Mapfre Aspar Team APRILIA 1'39.442
11 Hector BARBERA SPA Team Toth Aprilia APRILIA 1'39.504
12 Lukas PESEK CZE Auto Kelly - CP APRILIA 1'39.583
13 Alex DEBON SPA Lotus Aprilia APRILIA 1'39.610
14 Roberto LOCATELLI ITA Metis Gilera GILERA 1'39.895
15 Yuki TAKAHASHI JPN JiR Team Scot 250 HONDA 1'39.941
16 Ratthapark WILAIROT THA Thai Honda PTT SAG HONDA 1'40.058
17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Cardion AB Motoracing APRILIA 1'40.075
18 Fabrizio LAI ITA Campetella Racing GILERA 1'40.385
19 Eugene LAVERTY IRL Blusens Aprilia APRILIA 1'40.672
20 Federico SANDI ITA Zongshen Team Of China APRILIA 1'41.142
21 Alex BALDOLINI ITA Matteoni Racing APRILIA 1'41.237
22 Imre TOTH HUN Team Toth Aprilia APRILIA 1'42.447
23 Russel GOMEZ SPA Blusens Aprilia APRILIA 1'42.771
24 Doni Tata PRADITA INA Yamaha Pertamina Indonesia YAMAHA 1'43.976
25 Ho Wan CHOW CHN Zongshen Team Of China APRILIA 1'48.328

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Sarah Carnell

By Sarah Carnell