Bridgestone: Bradl the boss in Friday practice at Brno

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Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)

LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl topped the timesheets in Friday free practice at the Czech Republic Grand Prix, the German rider setting a time of 1’56.500 on his penultimate lap of the day to lead a tightly-packed field at Brno.

Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP
Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP

Photo by: Bridgestone Corporation

Bradl spent his first stint in FP2 evaluating the hard compound rear slick before a late switch to the softer rear unleashed the potential of his Honda RC213V, enabling the German rider to finish the day 0.038 seconds quicker than his closest challenger, Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo. Having finished top in the morning FP1 session, Lorenzo’s best time in FP2 saw him narrowly miss the top spot, but placed him 0.062 seconds ahead of Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who ended the day third overall. Once again Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was the quickest of the CRT riders, his best lap time of 1'58.217 sees the Spaniard end the day twelfth overall.

Conditions throughout the day at Brno were fine, with track temperatures reaching a peak of 38°C in the afternoon FP2 session. The fine weather allowed the riders to test a wide range of tyres, with all five slick options brought by Bridgestone to this race evaluated today. The cooler morning session saw riders prefer the softer slick options front and rear, while in the afternoon session both the softer and harder slick options were used. The preferred slick options at this stage of the race weekend are the hard compound front due to its greater braking stability, while at the rear, the softer slick options – which give greater drive through the sweeping sections of this circuit were favoured. Initial feedback from those riders that used the harder rear slick options show that this option is working well when track temperatures are higher.

The weather forecast indicates a chance of rain tomorrow and Sunday, which could make the rankings from today’s practice sessions all the more important for the line-up in tomorrow afternoon’s QP sessions. The next scheduled MotoGP™ session is FP3 at 955 local time (GMT +2).

Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department

“Today’s practice sessions went very well with all slick options evaluated today. Most riders preferred the softer front slick this morning but once the track condition improved with the warmer temperatures, most riders used the harder front as this option gives better stability in the downhill braking sections that this circuit is famous for. Although track temperatures were higher in the afternoon, there were not at a level that resulted in many works riders deciding to try their harder rear slick option, but the feedback we did receive shows that this option does work well in higher temperatures. Overall, performance of all slick options was very good and lap times are a few tenths quicker compared to the Friday practice sessions last year, so we could be in for a record-breaking qualifying session tomorrow.”

Bridgestone Motorsport

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Series MOTOGP
Article type Practice report
Tags bradl, bridgestone, brno, czech republic, lcr honda, motogp, practice