Eugene on track to say farewell to MotoGP on a high
Bouyant Eugene Laverty believes he is on track to finish his MotoGP sojourn on a high note ahead of his return to World Superbikes next season. Jorge Lorenzo dominated free practice in Valencia from Marc Marquez in an all Spanish top four.
The top 11 riders were separated by less than a second with Eugene in 15th as the fastest of the two Pull&Bear Aspar Team riders. The Toome rider finished with a best lap of 1'31.776, inside the target time he had set for himself before arriving in Valencia.
Eugene said: "It has been a positive day because my lap time was better than my target. I was hoping for a 1'32.0, which would have been a good lap time, but we managed a 1'31.7 and I am happy because the rhythm is good.
"This is a track where I wasn't sure we could be strong with our bike because it is really tight and twisty but we end the first day in 15th position and with a lap time that's already a second quicker than last year and we want to keep improving.
"It's my last Grand Prix so it would be great to make Q2. If that doesn't happen it doesn't matter because I still think we can be strong in the race on Sunday."
Team-mate Yonny Hernández's day came to a slightly early conclusion after a crash in the final stages of second practice.