p>Despite riding with an injured shoulder, Jorge Lorenzo was the one to beat in Japan on Friday as he set the pace in both practice sessions.

Lorenzo retains P1 at Motegi

Lorenzo retains P1 at Motegi

Having topped FP1 with a 1:45.432, the championship contender was quickly up to speed in the afternoon's session.

Laying down the laps he lowered his benchmark time to a 1:45.426 while Marc Marquez slotted into second place. The Honda rider was 0.103s slower.

Pushing hard Marquez was forced into an impressive save as he almost it through the swooping right-hander and had to raise his leg high into the air to regain his balance.

As their rivals battled it out behind them, Lorenzo and Marquez held the 1-2 through to the final five minutes of practice.

Bradley Smith come to the fore however his reign was brief as first Andrea Dovizioso and then Lorenzo edged ahead.

The Yamaha rider finished the day with a 1:44.731 while a late burst from Dani Pedrosa put the Honda rider up into second place, 0.128s off the pace.

Ducati riders Iannone and Dovizioso were third and fourth on board their GP15s while Smith and Aleix Espargaro were next in line.

Marquez dropped to seventh as he was unable to improve on his earlier time while Valentino Rossi finished P8. He was 0.823s behind his team-mate and championship rival.

There were falls for Loris Baz, who went down at Turn 11, and wildcard rider Katsuyuki Nakasuga.

Times

1 Jorge LORENZO    SPA    Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 1'44.731    

2 Dani PEDROSA    SPA    Repsol Honda Team 1'44.859    0.128

3 Andrea IANNONE    ITA    Ducati Team 1'45.043    0.312 4

4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO    ITA    Ducati Team 1'45.059    0.328

5 Bradley SMITH    GBR    Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1'45.250    0.519

6 Aleix ESPARGARO    SPA    Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'45.348    0.617

7 Marc MARQUEZ    SPA    Repsol Honda Team 1'45.492    0.761

8 Valentino ROSSI    ITA    Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 1'45.554    0.823

9 Pol ESPARGARO    SPA    Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1'45.597    0.866

10 Hector BARBERA    SPA    Avintia Racing 1'45.645    0.914

11 Cal CRUTCHLOW    GBR    LCR Honda 1'45.846    1.115

12 Scott REDDING    GBR    EG 0,0 Marc VDS 1'46.074    1.343

13 Maverick VIÑALES    SPA    Team SUZUKI ECSTAR 1'46.464    1.733

14 Jack MILLER    AUS    LCR Honda 1'46.477    1.746

15 Yonny HERNANDEZ    COL    Octo Pramac Racing 1'46.563    1.832

16 Danilo PETRUCCI    ITA    Octo Pramac Racing 1'46.648    1.917

17 Stefan BRADL    GER    Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1'46.649    1.918

18 Takumi TAKAHASHI    JPN    Team HRC with Nissin 1'46.650    1.919

19 Eugene LAVERTY    IRL    Aspar MotoGP Team 1'46.770    2.039

20 Nicky HAYDEN    USA    Aspar MotoGP Team 1'46.827    2.096

21 Mike DI MEGLIO    FRA    Avintia Racing 1'46.934    2.203

22 Alvaro BAUTISTA    SPA    Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1'46.974    2.243

23 Katsuyuki NAKASUGA    JPN    Yamaha Factory Racing Team 1'47.096    2.365

24 Loris BAZ    FRA    Forward Racing     1'47.219    2.488

25 Toni ELIAS    SPA    Forward Racing 1'47.689    2.958

26 Alex DE ANGELIS    RSM    E-Motion IodaRacing Team 1'48.572    3.841

27 Kousuke AKIYOSHI    JPN    AB Motoracing 1'48.769    4.038