Forward Racing’s Lorenzo Baldassarri ended this morning’s first Moto2 practice fastest of all by just 0.011s over championship leader Franco Morbidelli.

By the time FP1 for the Moto2 World Championship got underway, the Le Mans circuit had almost entirely dried out and the field wasted no time in getting laps under their belt in what is forecast to potentially be the only dry session of the day.

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Top spot changed hands for the entire 45-minutes, and it was a last-gasp effort from Baldassarri, who flew under the radar for much of FP1, that saw him pip Morbidelli with a 1m38.258s. Marc VDS rider Morbidelli did suffer a small off at Turn 8 in the final quarter of FP1, though was able to rejoin immediately.

Francesco Bagnaia comes into the French Grand Prix off the back of his maiden Moto2 podium last time out at Jerez, and the confidence that has given him shone through in this morning’s FP1. The Sky VR46 rider hovered around at the sharp-end of the field for the entire session, eventually taking the chequered flag in third.

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Mattia Pasini slotted into fourth spot ahead of Takaaki Nakagami and Xavi Vierge. Dominique Aegerter crossed the line seventh fastest and as top Suter rider, with Simone Corsi and Jerez winner Alex Marquez completing the top 10.

Yonny Hernandez came into a little bit of form in Spain, and has been able to carry that forward to Le Mans. The Colombian ended FP1 11th, with Isaac Vinales, Miguel Oliveira, Xavier Simeon and Hafizh Syahrin rounding out the top 15.

Reigning British Supersport champion Tarran Mackenzie made his grand prix debut this morning as he begins life at Kiefer Racing as Danny Kent’s replacement. The Scotsman completed 20 laps and was just 2.8s off the pace in 29th.