Reigning champion Jorge Lorenzo sets the fastest lap of the Friday afternoon practice at Twin Ring Motegi. The session witnessed huge high-side crashes of Dani Pedrosa and Eugene Laverty.
Dani was able to walk away but it is reported that he has suffered a right collarbone fracture. Just after the crash, Laverty required a stretcher, but later he walked to the medical center.
Ducati Factory Team rider Andrea Iannone is missing his third race in a row due to his back injury. His seat has been taken by Hector Barbera.
With Avintia Ducati, 2015 Australian SBK champion Mike Jones makes his MotoGP debut. Yamaha test rider Katsuyuki Nakasuga is also making wild-card appearance in Japan.
Championship leader Marc Marquez also suffered a slow slide-off at Turn 10. Most of the riders are gambling with tyre choice to find a good setup for Sunday's race.
Lorenzo topped the timesheets with 1'45.151, followed by Andrea Dovizioso. Marquez ended the session in fourth with title contender Valentino Rossi in seventh.