The first two free practice sessions for this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring close to Zeltweg concluded this afternoon with the two Ducati Team riders – Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci – in third and eighth place respectively.
Dovizioso, who topped the timesheets in the morning’s FP1 session with a quickest lap of 1’24.003, was unable to improve in FP2 thanks also to an innocuous slow-speed crash at Turn 3 at the end of the session, while Petrucci finished the day in eighth place with a best time of 1’24.330 which he set in FP2.
Andrea Dovizioso (#04 Ducati Team) – 1’24.003 (3rd)
“We began the day in a really positive way. In the afternoon we tried a different set-up that worked better under braking and this is important, especially because my pace is very good and I’m not far behind Marquez. We’re working well and I think there is still room to improve. Unfortunately, I made a small mistake at Turn 3 and was not able to improve my FP2 time, but as I said before we’re fast and I’m really pleased about that.”
Danilo Petrucci (#9 Ducati Team) – 1’24.330 (8th)
“In the afternoon we were able to improve on our morning performance and so I’m satisfied with that. This is a bit of a tough track for me because, like Brno with its long straights, I tend to lose a bit of aerodynamic efficiency, because of the way I’m built. As a result, we’re trying to improve under braking, where we can make up a bit of the time we’re losing on the straight. My squad is working well and I’m pleased with the way I lapped with the used tyres. Of course tomorrow we will have to try and do a bit better and also make the best of the new tyres so we can start Sunday’s race from the front of the grid.”
The Ducati riders will be back on the track tomorrow, Saturday 10 August, at 09.55 CET for the third free practice session, while the qualifying sessions will be held after FP4, starting from 14.10.