Qatar MotoGP test: Aleix Espargaro fastest on day one

Aleix Espargaro underlined the pace of Forward's Open class Yamaha as he led the 'non-factory' MotoGP test in Qatar on Friday

Qatar MotoGP test: Aleix Espargaro fastest on day one

Originally scheduled as the final pre-season test for the full field, the three days at Losail are taking place without the works Honda, Yamaha and Ducati teams as all took part in Bridgestone's tyre test at Phillip Island instead.

That left the way clear for the satellite and Open teams in Qatar.

Espargaro had come close to upstaging the works squads several times in the previous tests at Sepang, and he was nearly three tenths of a second clear of the field on day one at Losail.

His 1m55.386s put him ahead of early pacesetter Bradley Smith's Tech 3 Yamaha by 0.253 seconds.

Both Espargaro brothers were within the top three, as Aleix's younger brother Pol put the second Tech 3 bike third, narrowly ahead of satellite Honda men Alvaro Bautista and Stefan Bradl.

Pramac's Andrea Iannone was the top Ducati in sixth.

Ioda made its first appearance of the off-season with a single bike for Danilo Petrucci after the collapse of Leon Camier's deal. The Italian was 16th of the 17 bikes present.

Pos Rider Team/Bike Time Gap 1. Aleix Espargaro Forward-Yamaha 1m55.386s 2. Bradley Smith Tech 3 Yamaha 1m55.639s +0.253s 3. Pol Espargaro Tech 3 Yamaha 1m56.072s +0.686s 4. Alvaro Bautista Gresini Honda 1m56.081s +0.695s 5. Stefan Bradl LCR Honda 1m56.081s +0.695s 6. Andrea Iannone Pramac Ducati 1m56.780s +1.394s 7. Colin Edwards Forward-Yamaha 1m56.961s +1.575s 8. Yonny Hernandez Pramac Ducati 1m57.318s +1.932s 9. Nicky Hayden Aspar Honda 1m57.574s +2.188s 10. Scott Redding Gresini Honda 1m57.922s +2.536s 11. Hiroshi Aoyama Aspar Honda 1m58.151s +2.765s 12. Hector Barbera Avintia FTR-Kawasaki 1m58.503s +3.117s 13. Karel Abraham Cardion Honda 1m58.833s +3.447s 14. Broc Parkes PBM Aprilia 1m59.121s +3.735s 15. Mike di Meglio Avintia FTR-Kawasaki 1m59.294s +3.908s 16. Danilo Petrucci Ioda Aprilia 1m59.358s +3.972s 17. Michael Laverty PBM Aprilia 2m00.055s +4.669s 
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