Red Bull KTM rookie Raul Fernandez fought through the pain of his injured right hand to head Moto2 FP3 at MotorLand Aragon on Saturday morning.
Remy Gardner joined his teammate at the top to the times after a late session charge from both with Sam Lowes rounding out the top three after dominating for the majority of the 40 minutes of action.
Fabio Di Giannantonio got off to the worst start as FP3 got underway, the Italian sliding off his Gresini at turn nine. Lowes, however, was ‘onit’ from the beginning, striking quickly with a 1’52.043 to sit top overall.
His Marc VDS teammate was quick to follow, sitting second from his fourth lap, with Marco Bezzecchi and Marcel Schrotter holding third and fourth. Local rider Xavi Vierge sat fifth ahead of the KTM’s of Gardner and Fernandez before Bezzecchi charge to second and Fernandez advanced to fifth.
Fermín Aldeguer continued his strong rookie form in eighth with Tom Luthi and Marcos Ramirez completing the initial top 10. Jorge Navarro - recently announced as leaving Boscoscuro for the Sito Pons run FlexBox outfit - circulating in 12th.
Bo Bendsneyder found the limit at turn two as the final 15 minutes began, the top five all having improved their Friday times, to dominate overall.
The rapid rookie continued his rise as the closing 10 minutes arrived, Aldeguer advancing his Speed Up into fourth with a ’52.7 before looking to improve next time around. He succeeded with his 12th lap, taking third from Augusto Fernandez but it was short lived, Nicolò Bulega arriving to steal the position moments later.
Aron Canet was the next to strike as the session wound down, the Aspar rider finding fourth as Navarro slotted the second Speed Up into second place. The teamwork continued as Albert Arenas joined the fun in fifth with Boscoscuro now holding four of the top seven positions.
Five to go and the KTM’s finally arrived. Fernandez heading Gardner for first and second, and both into the 1’51’s as Lowes was dropped to third. The Brit heading out of pitlane for his final push.
The Red Bulls continued to fly as FP3 counted down, the rookie maintaining his lead over the Australian despite the pair both losing time in the final sector. As the chequered flag raised, Di Giannantonio returned to the top five, Schrotter, Hector Garzo and Joe Roberts the first to lose out on a Q2 spot. John McPhee completing the final practice three-seconds adrift.