Dovizioso fastest in practice for MotoGP Grand Prix of Japan

Italy's Andrea Dovizioso talks with team staff members during the free practice session for the MotoGP Japanese Motorcycle Grand Prix at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit in Motegi, north of Tokyo, Friday, Oct. 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)

Andrea Dovizioso clocked the fastest lap in Friday's practice for the MotoGP Grand Prix of Japan, edging championship leader Marc Marquez

MOTEGI, Japan — Andrea Dovizioso clocked the fastest lap in Friday's practice for the MotoGP Grand Prix of Japan, edging championship leader Marc Marquez.

Dovizioso was just 0.043 seconds ahead of the Repsol Honda rider in wet conditions at Twin Ring Motegi. Aleix Espagaro of Aprilia Racing had the third-fastest time of 1 minute, 55.061 seconds.

Dovizioso's Ducati teammate Jorge Lorenzo was fourth ahead of Yamaha rider Johann Zarco.

Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa, who has five wins at Motegi, moved up to eighth place after struggling in the morning practice session.

With four races left, Marquez leads Dovizioso by 16 points. Maverick Vinales and Pedrosa are in third and fourth place in the season standings.

Rain is also forecast for Saturday's qualifying.

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