LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl delighted his legion of German fans at Sachsenring by topping Friday practice with a benchmark lap time of 1’22.030 in this afternoon’s Free Practice 2 session.
Third quickest today was Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who stopped the clocks with a 1’22.221 to finish within two-tenths of Bradl. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro again set the pace among the CRT pack, finishing eighth overall with a time of 1’22.641.
Ambient temperatures varied greatly today as cloud cover in the morning kept track temperatures low in FP1 before the sun emerged for FP2 to boost track temperatures to a peak of 41°C.
The cool temperatures in the morning resulted in all riders using the softer rear slick options and only two riders evaluating the harder front slick option.
As track temperatures increased for FP2, riders were able to evaluate both the harder front and rear slick options, although no clear picture on tyre choice for the race has emerged at this stage.
Warm and mainly fine conditions are expected tomorrow, though there is a slight chance of rain. The next MotoGP session is scheduled to start at 0955 local time tomorrow (GMT +2).
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“Today’s weather conditions were typical for this circuit, with early cloud cover keeping temperatures low before the sun came out in the afternoon. The cool track in FP1 meant most riders used softer slicks front and rear, before many riders switched to the harder front option when track temperatures increased in FP2.
Today’s practice sessions showed how the layout of this circuit is so challenging as a few riders got caught out at turn eleven which is the first right-hand corner after a long sequence of left-hand turns. The chain of left-handed corners means the right shoulder of the tyres cool down substantially before the entry of turn eleven, which necessitates a precise approach by the riders.
The lap times today were quite good – even in the cold FP1 session - with many riders lapping close to race lap record pace. If the weather stays dry, I think as teams refine their setup and track conditions improve we will see a very quick pace in qualifying tomorrow.”