Cooler condition meant riders were going no faster than the time set on Friday and for first it seemed the FP2 time of Alex Rins (1:59.608) will not be beaten.
All along the session Vinales and Marquez traded lap times, with one overcoming the attempt of the other to top the timesheets.
But it was Vinales’s time of 2:00.640s which finally settled as benchmark for first runs.
With 20 minutes to go on the clock, Honda rider strike back again to top the time sheets. But Vinales wasn’t holding back his reins and won the cat and mouse battle for the moment with 2:00.284.
It wasn’t until last six minutes of the session when Dani Pedrosa mounted the charge and was the first man to dip into 1:59s. He improved from P11 to top the timing the sheets.
This started the domino effect for the rest of the session, as everyone went out on fresh rubber in order to improve their earlier lap times and save themselves from Q2.
Alvaro Bautista also went fastest beating Pedrosa’s time. He went from outside of top ten on to P1, but Pedrosa with his next run reclaimed his top spot.
But as long as the Jack Miller and Vinales went out the time set by Pedrosa wasn’t enough to hold onto P1, Vinales and Miller traded top times until Marquez came out on fresh boots to go overall fastest on his last flyer.
But it was Maverick Vinales who pipped Marquez as he took the chequered flag and topped the FP2 with 1:59.211.
Jack Miller settled behind Marquez a further 0.144 off the Vinales time and Pedrosa like earlier session finshed P4 with Alex Rins completing the top five 0.377 off the pace.
Zarco and Petrucci finished P6 and P7 respectively with Dovizioso, Rossi and Iannone also managing to sneak into the top 10. Bautista after his earlier brilliant efforts only managed P11 on his year old Ducati.
Time Sheet for FP3: