Bridgstone: Marquez runs hot in scorching conditions at Sepang to set new circuit record

On his penultimate lap in Qualifying Practice 2, Marquez set a time of 1’59.791 to smash his own Sepang Circuit Record Lap.

Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez was in record-breaking form during qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix, as the 2014 World Champion set the quickest ever time at the Sepang circuit to become the first rider to achieve thirteen pole positions in a MotoGP™ season.

On his penultimate lap in Qualifying Practice 2, Marquez set a time of 1’59.791 to smash his own Sepang Circuit Record Lap by over three-tenths of a second and claim pole position ahead of his teammate Dani Pedrosa by 0.182 seconds.

It was pleasing to see the Circuit Best Lap record beaten so comprehensively by Marc in qualifying and I hope we will also see a new race record lap set tomorrow.

Masao Azuma

Third quickest in qualifying today was Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo who set a 2’00.203 on his final lap in QP2. All riders on the front row set their best lap time during qualifying on the combination of the medium compounds slicks front and rear.

Extremely hot ambient temperatures and strong sunshine pushed track temperatures today to levels. The peak track temperature of 58°C during Qualifying Practice the highest measurement recorded by Bridgestone in recent years. Today’s hot and dry conditions enabled the riders to assess a wide range of tyre combinations, with all of the slick options in Bridgestone’s tyre allocation for the Malaysian Grand Prix being utilised today.

Both the medium and hard compound front slicks are performing well this weekend and will feature in tomorrow’s race, with some riders preferring the better cornering grip of the medium option, while other riders prefer the better braking stability of the hard compound front.

Rear tyre choice for the Factory Ducati, Honda and Yamaha riders shows a strong trend towards the medium compound rear slick, while most of the Open-class riders look set to use the soft compound rear slick in tomorrow’s race.

The final MotoGP™ session before the race will be the Warm Up session at 1040 local time (GMT +8). The twenty lap Malaysian Grand Prix will commence at 1600 local time.

Masao Azuma – Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department: “After yesterday’s unsettled weather, it was important that all the sessions today were dry as it gave the teams and riders the chance to evaluate many different tyre combinations in preparation for tomorrow’s race. As expected, many riders tried our new hard compound front slick today and the overall consensus was that this tyre is well-suited to the conditions here this weekend.

Depending on each rider’s riding style and bike setup, both front slick options provide their own particular advantages and I expect front tyre choice to be evenly split between the medium and hard options. Rear tyre choice for the race is showing a preference among the Factory Ducati, Honda and Yamaha riders for the medium compound rear slick, while the majority of the Open-class riders prefer the soft compound rear.

The lap times from the riders so far this weekend, both during the time attack in qualifying and in long runs have been extremely quick and given the very high temperatures, this is a good indication of how well our 2014 specification tyres are performing at Sepang. In particular, it was pleasing to see the Circuit Best Lap record beaten so comprehensively by Marc in qualifying and I hope we will also see a new race record lap set tomorrow.”

Malaysian MotoGP™ QP2 times

Pos
Rider
Team
Qualifying Time
Gap
1
Marc MARQUEZ
Repsol Honda Team
1'59.791
 
2
Dani PEDROSA
Repsol Honda Team
1'59.973
0.182
3
Jorge LORENZO
Movistar Yamaha Racing
2'00.203
0.412
4
Stefan BRADL
LCR Honda MotoGP
2'00.472
0.681
5
Andrea DOVIZIOSO
Ducati Team
2'00.703
0.912
6
Valentino ROSSI
Movistar Yamaha Racing
2'00.740
0.949
7
Aleix ESPARGARO
NGM Forward Racing
2'00.801
1.010
8
Cal CRUTCHLOW
Ducati Team
2'01.119
1.328
9
Bradley Smith
Monster Yamaha Tech 3
2'01.263
1.472
10
Alvaro BAUTISTA
GO&FUN Honda Gresini
2'02.294
2.503
11
Hiroshi AOYAMA
Drive M7 Aspar
2'10.568
10.777
12
Pol ESPARGARO
Monster Yamaha Tech 3
No time set
 

Bridgestone Motorsport

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Event Malaysian GP
Sub-event Saturday qualifying
Track Sepang International Circuit
Drivers Bradley Smith , Jorge Lorenzo , Masao Azuma , Dani Pedrosa , Marc Marquez
Teams Forward Racing , Ducati Team , Repsol Honda Team , Tech 3
Article type Qualifying report
Tags honda, yamaha