Bradl edges Rossi in third practice


LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl stuck two fingers up to the HRC bosses who have decided that Cal Crutchlow is a better bet for 2015 than the German by topping the third MotoGP free practice session at Indianapolis ahead of nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi. Bradl put in the fastest lap of the weekend so far, a 1’32.522 to edge out Movistar Yamaha’s Rossi by 0.016s while yesterday’s timesheet topper and reigning world champion Marc Marquez could only muster a 1’32.862 for sixth place. Rossi’s team-mate Jorge Lorenzo ended in third place and only 0.084 slower than the Italian while a soft-tyre lap by Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso was enough for top spot with five minutes left but he was bumped down to fourth. Pol Espargaro recovered from a massive moment in the session when he dug his knee into the grass at the penultimate corner and nearly pitched himself off the Monster Yamaha but bounced back to set the fifth quickest time, ahead of Marquez. Andrea Iannone’s number one Pramac Ducati ground to a halt in the first minute but he managed to bag seventh place on his second GP14, just ahead of Bradley Smith who shot into the top ten with his last lap. Dani Pedrosa ended in ninth place while a last-ditch effort from Aleix Espargaro saw him get the final automatic qualifying two spot pushing out Yonny Hernandez. Alvaro Bautista had the mother and father of all highsides late in the session but walked away from the accident and his best of 1’33.676 was enough for 12th place, just one place ahead of Scott Redding, who was another place ahead of Crutchlow. Leon Camier ended in 21st place but has cut his gap to the fastest man to just 2.5s in only his third session on a MotoGP bike and was ahead of the PBM Aprilias of Michael Laverty and Broc Parkes.