Marc Marquez back on form at Brno Test
Johann Zarco fastest independent
Jack Miller finishes early after crash
Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) topped the Brno test with a late lunge for the top, setting a 1:55.209 on one of his last laps of the day. The Repsol Honda were working with some “important” components so says the reigning Champion, but details remained close to their chests.
Marc Marquez – 1’55.209
“Today was positive and I’m very happy because we did a lot of laps with a good feeling since the start of the test. We started early this morning and we went on until the evening with a new thing to try in every run. It’s tough when you have such a busy schedule, but Honda is working hard and that’s great motivation for a rider; we did a great job in testing everything that they brought here to Brno. Michelin is also working hard towards the future and brought a new front tyre here to test. Honestly it didn’t work as we were hoping for but it’s very good for us to see how much effort they give in trying to always improve, and surely today they gathered some useful information. As usual, towards the end of the day we put all of the best things together and we’ve done a good lap time. The fastest lap wasn’t the main target though, as it was more important to work for the future. In the end we’ve found several positive things and we’ll use something in the next race. I’m happy with the direction we’re taking and with the work we’re doing.”
Teammate Dani Pedrosa was third quickest after having led the way for some time in the afternoon, and Hiroshi Aoyama was also out on track in place of Stefan Bradl testing for HRC – with the trio banking more than 150 laps between them.
Dani Pedrosa – 1’55.399
“Today we worked hard trying to improve on the feeling we had in yesterday’s race and actually we did have a better feeling. The great change today was the track conditions, which were very good. The weather was perfect and the asphalt offered very good grip with a lot of rubber on track after an entire race weekend. We tried different electronics and suspension setup options and everything I tried was an improvement, so I could be faster and more consistent. It’s difficult to understand how much of this is a result of the track conditions and if it will be helpful on other tracks, so we’ll have to wait and see in Austria in few days.”
Marquez also tried a new Michelin tyre that was available at the test, although LCR Honda Castrol’s Crutchlow didn’t. Crutchlow took the opportunity on Monday to try out a few new parts for the front end of his RC213V.
Cal Crutchlow – 1’55.771
“We had a good day today. The track is always nice to ride on a Monday after Grand Prix as there’s a lot of rubber on the track and you’re able to set fast lap times. We’re happy enough, we had some small parts to try for the front of the bike, some forks, and a small geometry to give a different feeling on the braking area. But otherwise we had no new parts. I didn’t try the new Michelin tyre, I let Marc (Marquez) try that. He tried something for me and I tried something for him. He said it was no better really. We have to assess the data from the new forks, there were some positives and some negatives.”
Crutchlow’s teammate Takaaki Nakagami, meanwhile, worked on settings and finished the test just ahead of key rookie rival and fellow Honda rider Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) as the two took P14 and P15 respectively.
Takaaki Nakagami – 1’56.222
“For us weren’t testing anything special today. We didn’t test the new Michelin tyres, we were just focusing on why we struggled during the race weekend. With the back-to-back races, we had to double check on the settings because we have two bikes – one bike for the previous test and one bike for the race weekend. So we double-checked the set-up of the bike and we now understand why we struggled so much on the race weekend and that is the main thing. We did a few laps, but it was a good test and now we’re really focusing on the next race in Austria.”
Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) was top Yamaha, moving up to second late on and, in an uncharacteristic day of action for the Frenchman, riding until very late on as he did more than 70 laps.
Johann Zarco – 1’55.342
“This test here in Brno has been quite ok. We’ve got nothing new to test, but just tried some different settings on the bike to find a better setup in order to feel more comfortable on it, obviously with the experience I got in the race yesterday. I think we did some decent work, had some good laps and now I’m getting the right feeling. I believe my comments were much better today to find very small things that we hope will give us a better pace for the next races. We were offered to test a new tyre, but we didn’t use it. In the end, we just did a lot of laps and I enjoyed to be on the bike.”
Teammate Hafizh Syahrin did only a handful less and was top rookie, completing the top ten.
Hafizh Syahrin – 1’56.032
“It has been an intense test today because I really wanted to work with the bike. We did many laps and I feel very good with the bike now. We understand little by little, especially with the electronic. We tried different things on the front to help me for turning. We found many good points today, so I’m truly happy with the test. I ride calmer and I think I do the same time like my best during the weekend, but I ride more relaxed, which is great. Before I was fighting with the bike and now I understand it a lot better. I think we can continue like that in Austria.”
Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) was P7 and second Yamaha, however, with the factory riders not having any real novelties to test and rather carrying on their work to end their victory drought.
Valentino Rossi – 1’55.918
“It was a good test, because we had very hot conditions – similar to those we had during the GP weekend – so we could try something else. We worked on acceleration on the first touch of the throttle and also on trying to save the tyres during the races. We tried different things and found that some things were good, but we have to put them all together. Unfortunately we weren’t able to improve the performance from yesterday, so I think for Austria the situation will be the same.”
Teammate Maverick Viñales opted not to join the day’s eight-hour long session, in an effort to fully recover from yesterday’s crash in time for the eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich, held this weekend.
Massimo Meregalli – Yamaha Factory Racing Team Manager
“It’s always good to test after the race, because it helps us draw an immediate comparison and allows riders to give clear feedback. We focused on the electronics today, it was our main objective, with the aim to improve drivability of the bike, especially on the first touch of the throttle. We also tried the new Michelin front tyre and at the end of the day we were able to test a new fairing. It’s a shame that Maverick couldn’t join us, as we would have valued his input very much, but we also put high importance on his well-being. We hope he no longer feels sore from yesterday’s crash when we start riding again in Austria on the Friday. Though today’s testing had to be done with one rider, it was still a positive day overall.”
Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo were next on the timesheets after Marquez, Zarco and Pedrosa. The Czech GP winner and runner up were working on aero and frames but had nothing big to test – focused on fine-tuning. Nevertheless, the two together put in almost 100 laps for the Borgo Panigale marque and were only 0.092 apart by the end of play.
Danilo Petrucci (Alma Pramac Racing) was P8 after just over 30 laps, but teammate Jack Miller only did 13 – a crash after an issue on his first bike put paid to his plans, but rider ok. The team elected not to run the second machine containing a new engine.
Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was top Hamamatsu factory machine in P9 after more than 60 laps, and he was able to do some comparison runs between different chassis configurations. This including a chassis with a partially new specification that has already been used by Guintoli in the Czech GP weekend. The Spaniard also worked on electronics and trialled a new front tyre brought by Michelin for the use of all riders.
Alex Rins – 1:55.986
“Today we tried a lot of things, firstly in the electronics and also we did a comparison between the actual carbon chassis and an improved one, that was brought here by Sylvain. With the electronics I feel we have done some improvements, and we’ll keep working to understand the bike better.”
Teammate Andrea Iannone, however, had a shorter day – crashing early and sitting out the remainder of the day. Test rider Sylvain Guintoli did get some good mileage despite his broken ribs, though, putting in 37 for the Japanese manufacturer.
Andrea Iannone – 1:56.111
“I wasn’t able to test much, because this morning I crashed and I have a lot of pain in my left shoulder. I’ve had problems with this shoulder in the past and we decided it’s better not to risk further damage before the Austrian GP. This morning, before the crash, my feeling was good and positive. We knew we needed to work on consistency, and we began with that, but in the end it wasn’t possible to continue.”
Sylvain Guintoli – 1:57.843
“We’ve completed a useful test and tried some different items, it’s been good. The weekend here went very well, I could’ve done without the injury as it’s been really painful, but we completed everything and got a lot of information. We confirmed some parts on the chassis which we’d already tried in Motegi, and we worked on many different things including electronics strategies. We’re working hard but of course races are the best tests for the data. We’re working in the short, medium, and long term – everything has a value either for now or for the future.”
Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) was another coming back from injury as he took P12 on the timesheets and was top Noale machine. The Spaniard was testing a carbon swingarm before a crash that then ruled him out after 26 laps, and teammate Scott Redding focused on a modified fuel tank and seat.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Bradley Smith, meanwhile, was P13 on the timesheets and did nearly 70 laps. The sole KTM on track as test rider Mika Kallio remains sidelined following a German GP crash and Pol Espargaro recovers from a fall in the Czech GP, the Brit had plenty to work on as the constant development continues despite their tougher run of late.
That’s it from Brno and it’s next stop Austria as the paddock now head for the stunning Red Bull Ring in the Styrian alps. The hills will be alive with the sound of MotoGP once again from the ninth to 11th August.
MotoGP 2018 – Brno Test Results
- MARQUEZ, Marc Repsol Honda Team 1:55.209
- ZARCO, Johann – Monster Yamaha Tech 3 +0.133
- PEDROSA, Dani – Repsol Honda Team +0.190
- DOVIZIOSO, Andrea – Ducati Team +0.308
- LORENZO, Jorge – Ducati Team +0.400
- CRUTCHLOW, Cal – LCR Honda CASTROL +0.562
- ROSSI, Valentino – Movistar Yamaha MotoGP +0.709
- PETRUCCI, Danilo – Alma Pramac Racing +0.730
- RINS, Alex – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR +0.777
- SYAHRIN, Hafizh – Monster Yamaha Tech 3 +0.823
- IANNONE, Andrea – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR +0.902
- ESPARGARO, Aleix – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +1.157
- SMITH, Bradley – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +1.357
- NAKAGAMI, Takaaki – LCR Honda IDEMITSU +1.413
- MORBIDELLI, Franco – EG 0,0 Marc VDS +1.488
- REDDING, Scott – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +1.646
- MILLER, Jack – Alma Pramac Racing +1.676
- LUTHI, Thomas – EG 0,0 Marc VDS +1.825
- GUINTOLI, Sylvain – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR +2.634
- AOYAMA, Hiroshi – HRC Honda Team +4.125
MotoGP World Championship Points
- Marc MARQUEZ Honda SPA 181
- Valentino ROSSI Yamaha ITA 132
- Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati ITA 113
- Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha SPA 109
- Jorge LORENZO Ducati SPA 105
- Johann ZARCO Yamaha FRA 97
- Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati ITA 94
- Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda GBR 90
- Andrea IANNONE Suzuki ITA 81
- Jack MILLER Ducati AUS 61
- Alex RINS Suzuki SPA 58
- Dani PEDROSA Honda SPA 57
- Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati SPA 51
- Pol ESPARGARO KTM SPA 32
- Tito RABAT Ducati SPA 30
- Hafizh SYAHRIN Yamaha MAL 24
- Franco MORBIDELLI Honda ITA 22
- Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia SPA 17
- Bradley SMITH KTM GBR 13
- Scott REDDING Aprilia GBR 12
- Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda JPN 10
- Mika KALLIO KTM FIN 6
- Karel ABRAHAM Ducati CZE