Austin MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa on top as Marc Marquez shrugs off crash

Dani Pedrosa left it late at Austin to knock Honda team-mate Marc Marquez off top spot in the third MotoGP practice session

Austin MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa on top as Marc Marquez shrugs off crash

Pedrosa lapped the Texan circuit in 2m04.408s, the fastest time of the weekend so far, to beat his compatriot by almost four tenths of a second.

That was six tenths fastest than the fastest time on Friday but still one second slower than Marquez managed in the pre-season test.

Marquez had bounced back from an early crash at Turn 13 to run fastest for much of the session but Pedrosa's late improvement left him no time to reply.

Jorge Lorenzo was a further half a second back in third, moving his works Yamaha above Cal Crutchlow's satellite Tech 3 machine with his last lap of the session.

Lorenzo made the gap to the Hondas much more respectable, having been more than a second behind for much of the session. His final effort hauled him above Crutchlow right at the last minute.

Stefan Bradl was fractionally ahead of Andrea Dovizioso in fifth, while Valentino Rossi had a low-key session on the second factory Yamaha and finished seventh fastest.

Alvaro Bautista, Nicky Hayden and Ben Spies completed the top 10 and claimed the final automatic spots in the pole shootout.

Behind them, Aleix Espargaro was the lead CRT machine, beating the satellite prototype bikes of Crutchlow's Tech 3 team-mate Bradley Smith and Andrea Iannone. The rookie pair will now have to fight through Q1 to join the rest of their 'class' in final qualifying.

Pos Rider Team/Bike Time Gap 1. Dani Pedrosa Honda 2m04.408s 2. Marc Marquez Honda 2m04.795s + 0.387s 3. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 2m05.295s + 0.887s 4. Cal Crutchlow Tech 3 Yamaha 2m05.630s + 1.222s 5. Stefan Bradl LCR Honda 2m05.908s + 1.500s 6. Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 2m05.963s + 1.555s 7. Valentino Rossi Yamaha 2m06.173s + 1.765s 8. Alvaro Bautista Gresini Honda 2m06.300s + 1.892s 9. Nicky Hayden Ducati 2m06.622s + 2.214s 10. Ben Spies Pramac Ducati 2m06.862s + 2.454s 11. Aleix Espargaro Aspar Aprilia 2m07.149s + 2.741s 12. Bradley Smith Tech 3 Yamaha 2m07.714s + 3.306s 13. Andrea Iannone Pramac Ducati 2m07.749s + 3.341s 14. Randy de Puniet Aspar Aprilia 2m08.405s + 3.997s 15. Yonny Hernandez PBM Aprilia 2m08.514s + 4.106s 16. Karel Abraham Cardion Aprilia 2m09.249s + 4.841s 17. Danilo Petrucci Ioda-Suter-BMW 2m09.409s + 5.001s 18. Hector Barbera Avintia FTR-Kawasaki 2m09.504s + 5.096s 19. Claudio Corti Forward FTR-Kawasaki 2m09.660s + 5.252s 20. Hiroshi Aoyama Avintia FTR-Kawasaki 2m09.675s + 5.267s 21. Colin Edwards Forward FTR-Kawasaki 2m09.698s + 5.290s 22. Michael Laverty PBM-Aprilia 2m10.109s + 5.701s 23. Bryan Staring Gresini FTR-Honda 2m11.017s + 6.609s 24. Blake Young Attack APR-Kawasaki 2m11.528s + 7.120s 25. Lukas Pesek Ioda-Suter-BMW 2m13.510s + 9.102s 26. Mike Barnes GPTech BCL-Suzuki 2m16.283s + 11.875s 
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Austin MotoGP: Jorge Lorenzo still believes Hondas can be caught
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