Factory Hondas edge out Yamaha on final day of second MotoGP test of 2013
Repsol Honda teammates Dani Pedrosa and Marc Marquez walked away from the second MotoGP test of 2013 at the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia on top of the timing sheets with both riders conducting an impressive three days of testing in mixed weather conditions. Pedrosa and Marquez swapped times with reigning MotoGP World Champion Jorge Lorenzo who was equally impressive on his Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1 as was the returning Valentino Rossi.
Overall, it's been a positive three days.
Rain began to fall in the morning and continued after the track opened so most of the riders had to wait until later in the day to aim for a fast lap time with Pedrosa setting the fastest time of 2m 0.562s on his 41st lap out of 57 while Marquez set his best time of 2m 0.643s on his 54th lap out of 54 with the Spaniard having another small crash in the wet but the rookie was unharmed. Lorenzo managed to set his best time of 2m 0.992s halfway through his session with Rossi ending the day fourth fastest (2m 1.062s). Finishing in fifth place on the timing screens was Honda Gresini rider Alvaro Bautista with a best lap of 2m 1.078s
Following Bautista closely in the 6th fastest position was Cal Crutchlow on the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 machine with a best time of 2m 1.094s. LCR Honda rider Stefan Bradl ended his test 7th fastest with a fastest lap of 2m 1.309s and the German rider finished ahead of the Ducati Team’s riders Andrea Dovizioso (2m 1.650s) and Nicky Hayden (2m 2.070s) who finished in 8th and 9th respectively. The final rider in the top ten was Britain’s Bradley Smith for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 with a best time of 2m 2.314s. The top CRT rider was Randy De Puniet for the Power Electronics Aspar team in 13th with a best time of 2m 2.863s.
Marquez achieved what he wanted to do over the three days and the Spaniard is happy despite a couple of small spills off his RC213V. He said, "It's been a good day, overall. In the morning we rode in the wet and I felt very good on the bike, even though I had a small crash. I clipped the white line and lost the front, but neither myself nor the bike were affected at all. When the track dried out we went back to our work on the electronics and with the bike setup -above all with the front.
On the initial laps I didn't feel completely comfortable with the front end and had another small crash at the hairpin when I was forcing it a bit too much. In the final hour we set the bike up the way we had been fastest at this test, and I think that we got a good time again with it. We can leave here feeling positive about how things went,” Marquez added.
Repsol Honda will test at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas on 12th – 14th March while the next MotoGP test is the IRTA test in Jerez, Spain from 23rd to 25th March.