Jorge Lorenzo has laid down his cards in the opening session of the 2016 MotoGP season, smashing the field with a 1:55.440 lap to take top spot from teammate Valentino Rossi by 0.267.
Rossi was a further 0.296 ahead of Andrea Iannone, while satellite Ducati rider Hector Barbera continued his strong pre-season form to finish the opening day of the year in fourth, ahead of Maverick Viñales and a late lap from Pol Espargaro.
Dani Pedrosa was the first of the Hondas in seventh, with teammate Marc Marquez right behind him in eighth and the second factory Ducati of Andrea Iannone in eighth.
Scott Redding led a collection of Brits in tenth, ahead of the session’s only crasher Bradley Smith in eleventh and Cal Crutchlow in twelfth.
The MotoGP field have a sole session today, in the Qatari extended schedule, with two sessions tomorrow ahead of Saturday’s qualifying and Sunday’s floodlit race.