Marc Marquez celebrates 25th birthday at the top of the timesheets
Jack Miller fastest Ducati
Top 15 within a second of Marquez 1m29.969s benchmark
#ThaiTest Day Two Times
- MARQUEZ Marc SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1’29.969
- PEDROSA Dani SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 0.158
- MILLER Jack AUS Alma Pramac Racing Ducati 0.216
- VINALES Maverick SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 0.305
- ZARCO Johann FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 0.391
- PETRUCCI Danilo ITA Alma Pramac Racing Ducati 0.398
- RINS Alex SPA Team Suzuki Ecstar Suzuki 0.477
- CRUTCHLOW Cal GBR LCR Honda Honda 0.521
- DOVIZIOSO Andrea ITA Ducati Team Ducati 0.525
- LORENZO Jorge SPA Ducati Team Ducati 0.760
- IANNONE Andrea ITA Team Suzuki Ecstar Suzuki 0.806
- RABAT Tito SPA Reale Avintia Racing Ducati 0.886
- BAUTISTA Alvaro SPA Angel Nieto Team Ducati 0.914
- ROSSI Valentino ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 0.919
- NAKAGAMI Takaaki JPN LCR Honda Honda 0.932
- SMITH Bradley GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 1.144
- ESPARGARO Aleix SPA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia 1.161
- MORBIDELLI Franco ITA EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda 1.216
- KALLIO Mika FIN KTM Test Team KTM 1.629
- REDDING Scott GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia 1.668
- ABRAHAM Karel CZE Angel Nieto Team Ducati 1.692
- LUTHI Tom SWI EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda 2.025
- SYAHRIN Hafizh MAL Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 2.029
- SIMEON Xavier BEL Reale Avintia Racing Ducati 2.298
Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) celebrated his 25th birthday in style at the #ThaiTest, leaving it late to set the first ever sub-1:30 laptime of Buriram quite a way through a mammoth 90+ lap workload for the six-time World Champion.
Marquez took the top spot back from teammate Dani Pedrosa, who ended the day second fastest and a tenth and a half down after having led for the majority of the latter stages of the session.
Third was another stunning lap from Jack Miller (Alma Pramac Racing), who was 0.058 off Pedrosa as he continues his run of top performance in 2018.
One of the big headlines on Saturday was once again aero. Part of Marquez’ 94 laps in the incredible heat of Thailand was spent on an aero package, with the number 93, teammate Pedrosa and HRC test rider Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) – Friday’s fastest – all having tried updates across the Sepang and Thai tests.
Marc Marquez – P1
“First of all, I’d like to say thank you to all my fans as I’ve received many, many messages for my birthday! The best way to celebrate is on my bike, as I really enjoy riding it! Today was a good day. We started by playing with the setup a bit in the beginning of the session. Then we went on to try some Michelin rear tyres, which weren’t bad, and we also worked on the aerodynamics. At the end of the day, we put together our best package and we went faster. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow, as it seems that the track gets better and better every day, and so do the other riders. That said, I think we’re doing a great job in our garage and we’ll try to continue on that path.”
Dani Pedrosa – P2
“We’re working a lot these days because we have to understand many things, like the track, the setup, and so on. Today we were able to keep a better pace than yesterday, and we’ve already improved the riding and the setting a bit. We’re not there yet however, as we want to continue making progress. We tested some Michelin tyres, though it seems that they won’t be the ones we’ll use for the race, and we worked on suspension, electronics, and the gearbox setting among other things. Tomorrow we’ll probably also work on the aerodynamics. So far we’re working well, and tomorrow we’ll try to make the best of the final day!”
Behind the lockout for the Repsol squad at the top, Crutchlow was the third quickest Honda and eighth overall, but quicker than his Friday lap. The Brit concentrated on test duty rather than a time attack.
Miller, meanwhile, continued to show how he’s settled into life on the Ducati GP17. By the end of action, a late run from the Australian saw him shoot ahead of teammate Danilo Petrucci – who is on a GP18 and on Ducati test duty, and who ended the day in P6 after hovering further up earlier in the day.
Jack Miller – P3
“I am very satisfied. We are working well and the feeling is really positive. Lap after lap, run after run, we are faster and faster and this gives us great confidence. I feel very confident even with used tyres. We still have some room for improvement, so we must continue to work without looking at the timesheet. The sensations are really very positive”.
Danilo Petrucci – P6
“We are working hard for the championship. This morning we have dedicated ourselves to the tyres and doing a lot of comparison is very demanding. But we had positive results and even when we tried a time attack in the morning the chrono was good. There’s still a lot to do but the feeling is remarkable despite the fact that we haven’t worked on the set up yet “.
Fourth and fifth were locked out by Yamaha – on Saturday, Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) led Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) after Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) had been the quicker rider on Friday. Viñales’ best was a 1:30.274, with Zarco just 0.086 behind. Viñales had a more difficult morning before making a big step in the afternoon – aiming to confirm it on Day 3.
Massimo Meregali – Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – Team Director
“It was another day of hard work for us. We tried many things to improve the riders’ feeling on the bike. They each worked in their own direction. Maverick found something at the end of the day that seems to allow him to ride the bike the way he prefers. Tomorrow we will test if this change is indeed the way forward. Valentino also tried several setting variations, but none of them were an improvement, so tomorrow we’ll approach the issues differently. The riders also tried some of the four rear tyre specifications that Michelin brought here to test. We have still one more day of testing to complete, so we will see what the riders’ verdict is tomorrow.”
Maverick Viñales – P4
“It took us a bit of time to understand how to run the bike here. In the afternoon I started to feel good and was able to ride with a good pace. We changed some things at the last moment and it seemed to be an improvement, so maybe that’s the direction we should continue to follow tomorrow – we want to confirm it. I followed my own feelings and created my own set-up and that’s what made me feel good – when I have my bike and I can ride it with my own riding style. Tomorrow we will check the setting and we have to improve the rhythm. I think we made an incredible step in the afternoon and riding consistent 1’30s is the most important. We also tried two different tyre specs today and tomorrow we’ll do the other two and we will see.”
Valentino Rossi – P14
“It was a tough day. We started quite well this morning, I did some good lap times, and after we had some work to do and some new things to try. Sincerely, I didn’t like it a lot. We tried some different things for the electronics and also the setting, but unfortunately we didn’t find an improvement. We also had to do a bit of work for Michelin. They wanted us to try some other rear tyres. We have to stay concentrated and follow a different way tomorrow.”
Johann Zarco – P5
“This was a great second day, I’m happy! Compared to yesterday, my position in the classification is a lot better, although I didn’t focus on this too much. On every lap I did today, I was quite fast. I didn’t do a long run yet, but I was using the used tyre well. However, I have to admit, that I expected a bigger improvement when I put in the new tyre, but at the same time this helps us to better understand the changing track conditions. We got good information and for me the balance of the bike is very nice now. I was able to push a lot and I’m just a few tenths behind the top guys, which means, that there are only small areas, where we need to increase. Tomorrow we have another day and as it’s the third day of testing here in Thailand, everybody will be even faster, because we know the track and learned how to ride the bike here. I hope that I can be very competitive to leave the Buriram Circuit with a smile.”
Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar), after going second quickest on the first day of the test, was seventh on Day 2 and again top Hamamatsu machine. Starting 2018 healthy after injury problems last year, the Spanish sophomore did around half a century of laps and tried new aero from Suzuki, with the factory fielding the fairing they’d previously had as well as longer and shorter version of a new package. Both Rins and teammate Andrea Iannone, who ended the day in eleventh but only three tenths back on Rins, tried the updates – and both crashed, but with no consequences.
Davide Brivio – Suzuki Team Manager
“Another positive day today, we continued our work and both riders worked well despite both having very small crashes. Alex was happy when he tested the new aerodynamic package and it seems like it benefits him. So we will reconfirm tomorrow, and of course test again in Qatar, but it looks like Suzuki have made a very good job with this package and the riders feel the improvement. Today Andrea was testing other areas, but probably we will continue tomorrow with the new fairing for him. We are quite happy with the pace he found on a used tyre, and we didn’t try a time attack with Andrea today. Both riders are satisfied so we hope to finish well tomorrow.”
“Today was a really positive test and we tried many things. As you can see, we tried the new fairing in its two versions and some new parts on the chassis and I think it was really good. With the new aerodynamic fairing, I felt better about the anti-wheelie. MotoGP bikes obviously have a lot of electronics but all the time that the front wheel is making contact with the track then we have more power, so it’s always better, this new fairing can help me to have more acceleration and more speed. The good thing also is that this new fairing allows me to have better anti-wheelie without major loss in the top speed. I had a crash during the day but luckily it was without consequences and I’m OK.”
Andrea Iannone – P11
“Today we took some more positive steps and I’m satisfied. We had the new aerodynamic fairing available and it gave me a positive feeling initially but I couldn’t test it properly because I crashed in the early laps on the GSX-RR which was equipped with it. So after that we decided to give priority to other things, such as settings. Tomorrow we will try the new fairing again and we will be able to make some comparisons with the old one. Overall we are doing a good job, and the bike is behaving well with used tyres, but we have to find more performance with the new tyres. We will try to figure it out because over distance I feel confident and I have good pace, but to have speed in a single lap is very important for qualifying. The bike is improving run after run so it gives me confidence for tomorrow.”
The Ducati Team, meanwhile, moved on with the program. They have three aero fairings at Buriram as well as a chassis update and continued working on them. On Day 2 Andrea Dovizioso was ninth and teammate Jorge Lorenzo tenth. ‘DesmoDovi’ was just 0.004 off Crutchlow ahead of him and two tenths ahead of Lorenzo, with the Italian putting in over 70 laps and the Spaniard more than 50.
Andrea Dovizioso – P9
“Today we did a lot of work, making comparisons both with the new fairings and with a new version of the frame, and so I’m satisfied to have had an entire day to test these new components. As always there are pros and cons, but luckily we went strongly with all the new stuff and this is really positive. We were fast without using the soft tyre, but here probably the lap times are more difficult to interpret than in Malaysia, especially because Michelin still doesn’t have much experience on this track and so it seems that the right tyres for the race will be the harder ones, quite similar to those used in the Austrian GP. It’s not so easy to interpret the level of the other riders, but also today our bike proved to be very competitive.”
Jorge Lorenzo – P10
“Once again today wasn’t such a positive day for me. We weren’t competitive enough, I don’t have a good feeling with my bike and we still have to understand the reasons why. Even though it might seem that I’m riding better in several points of the track, other riders are going even better and for this reason we are some way behind in our lap times. However we’ve got a few ideas for tomorrow which should help us resolve these problems and get me to improve my pace above all.
Two more Independent Team riders on Ducatis took P12 and P13, with Reale Avinta Racing’s Tito Rabat ahead of Alvaro Bautista (Angel Nieto Team) by only 0.028. Both were ahead of Valentino Rossi, who ended the second day in fourteenth.
Tito Rabat – P12
“I’m very happy because today we were able to work a lot on the bike. I’m even more happy because I’ve built a lot of confidence with the front. Until today, this was the negative point with my bike, because whenever I pushed a little more I crashed and this wasn’t good. But today I didn’t crash, and we were able to try the hardest Michelin front for the first time with positive results. In the final minutes I grabbed a new set of tyres and I did a good lap time, but the most important thing for me is that we have been fast and consistent with old tyres. Tonight I have to rest well to start full throttle tomorrow”.
Álvaro Bautista – P13
“We are having a positive test. Yesterday, as it was the first day here, we focused on getting a good setup. On the first day it was hard for us to find rear grip, both under braking and acceleration, and today we continued to try some modifications. The good thing about having both bikes already available in the box is that we can do very different tests in succession, with the same track conditions. In Sepang, with just one bike, we could not do that. Right now, we need to improve a little on our braking, because under the acceleration we are doing much better. In Malaysia we were able to take a small step forward, and here we have taken another one. Little by little, I’m feeling better on the bike.”
Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu) completed the top fifteen on Saturday, fastest rookie once again and the last man in the 1:30 bracket. He had a three tenth advantage on key rival Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS), with the reigning Moto2 World Champion doing a best of 1:31.185.
Franco Morbidelli – P18
“Today we made a step, I had really good pace on the used tyres and I was having fun. In fact my best time came on the used tyres and, unfortunately, when I went to make the time attack my feeling wasn’t great and I wasn’t improving. We need to investigate why I can be fast on used tyres but I cannot be faster on new rubber. I also need to learn how to make this time attack because we can see the other guys can improve one second on a new tyre and, at the moment, I cannot and I need to understand why this is.”
His teammate Tom Lüthi did a 1:31.994, with the Sepang test having been his first time on the bike – and he ended the day just ahead of Hafizh Syahrin (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Xavier Simeon (Reale Avintia Racing).
Tom Lüthi – P22
“The goal today was to start with the same feeling that we had at the end of yesterday and to build on that. It was quite a positive day; I managed to follow some other riders and that was a good opportunity while I’m still working on my riding style to see how they get the bike to change direction and which lines they use through the turns. We also tried a few changes to the set up, as well as some of the different tyre options we have here, just to see how this affects the feeling with the bike. This meant we weren’t making big steps forward which, as a rider, is a little bit frustrating, but looking back on the day now it was definitely positive.”
Gilles Bigot – MarcVDS Chief Engineer for Tom Lüthi
“The step up from Moto2 to MotoGP is a bigger one than many people realise and I think it can be even more difficult for riders like Tom, who spent so many seasons in the intermediate class. Racing a MotoGP bike is far more complex than racing a Moto2 bike, where there are far fewer variables to consider. There are no electronics; you have only two tyres to choose from and the bikes are not so powerful. MotoGP is another level; different tyres with more options, complex electronics and twice as much power, which means that whatever you do with the throttle has a much bigger impact on the bike as a whole. It’s a steep learning curve and one that takes time to conquer and that’s something riders moving up to the premier class need to keep in mind. Patience really is a virtue when you’re a MotoGP rookie.”
Syahrin, on a MotoGP machine for only the second day ever, was impressive once again on Saturday. The Malaysian rider was only 0.004 seconds off fellow rookie Lüthi, and was ahead of Simeon by the end of action.
Hafizh Syahrin – P23
“I felt very good today, we raised our performance step by step, like we intended to do. This morning I felt really great and I was able to lower my lap time by more than one second compared to my very first day on Friday. Unfortunately, I made a small mistake in turn 7 this afternoon, which interrupted my progress a bit. Yet, I try to learn from this experience. For tomorrow I want to try to improve on the bike again, plus I aim to quickly find the same feeling I had this morning.”
Xavier Simeon – P24
“It was a strange day. We started well in the morning and on the first exit I was faster than yesterday straight away and since the lap time came easily, the expectations were quite high. A little later I had a small crash entering the last corner, which didn’t make me lose confidence because I was going really slow. But then as the day went on, we were not able to improve and I think we lost a bit the way with the set-up. I was hitting a wall with my pace and I couldn’t lap in 1’31. But this is testing. Sometimes you take the wrong the direction with the bike, which I’m sure will help me to learn more about MotoGP. I said yesterday that the track seemed easy, but it’s not that easy after all, which we confirmed today”.
Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) was the fastest KTM on Day 2, in P16 and only 1.144 off the front in order good showing of progress for the Austrian factory. With teammate Pol Espargaro absent due to injury, test rider Mika Kallio was the second representative for the Red Bull-backed team – and the Finn did the most laps of anyone, only a handful off a full 100. Smith says the squad found some good solutions to some issues they encountered in Malaysia – and after trying some things with the front suspension on Saturday, the front of the bike will be the focus on Sunday.
Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) had a positive first day and ended Day 2 a tiny margin off Smith ahead of him, just 0.017 off the Brit. Noale factory teammate Scott Redding, who ended Friday just behind Espargaro after some technical issues affecting his running, was a little further back on Day 2 as he continues to adapt to the RS-GP.
Aleix Espargaro’ – P17
“It was a complicated day. We are especially struggling in the first two sectors, where I am unable to make much of a difference even with my best efforts. In the other two sectors, we are closer to the leaders and the top ten is not far off, but I cannot be satisfied with the seventeenth place time. I don’t know if we will be able to take a step forward with the material available to us in these tests, but we will certainly try.”
Scott Redding – P20
“We worked a lot on the 2018 bike today, testing new components like a swingarm and the front forks. We managed to improve, but there are some aspects where we can grow. I am losing in braking. I am unable to slow the bike down the way I’d like to and that is evident when we compare the data with Aleix. We are doing a lot of tests and that explains the long stops in the garage between one outing and the next. The goal is to put together a package with the solutions that prove to work the best for me.”
Sunday is a slightly different schedule for the #ThaiTest as action gets underway half an hour earlier at 9:00 local time (GMT +7), and also ends an hour earlier at 17:00.
|1||MARQUEZ, Marc||Repsol Honda Team||1:29.969||91 / 97|
|2||PEDROSA, Dani||Repsol Honda Team||1:30.127||0.158||39 / 71|
|3||MILLER, Jack||Alma Pramac Racing||1:30.185||0.216||64 / 69|
|4||VIÑALES, Maverick||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:30.274||0.305||84 / 90|
|5||ZARCO, Johann||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:30.360||0.391||53 / 60|
|6||PETRUCCI, Danilo||Alma Pramac Racing||1:30.367||0.398||31 / 75|
|7||RINS, Alex||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||1:30.446||0.477||55 / 56|
|8||CRUTCHLOW, Cal||LCR Honda CASTROL||1:30.490||0.521||75 / 85|
|9||DOVIZIOSO, Andrea||Ducati Team||1:30.494||0.525||26 / 78|
|10||LORENZO, Jorge||Ducati Team||1:30.729||0.760||22 / 57|
|11||IANNONE, Andrea||Team SUZUKI ECSTAR||1:30.775||0.806||27 / 76|
|12||RABAT, Tito||Reale Avintia Racing||1:30.855||0.886||65 / 69|
|13||BAUTISTA, Alvaro||Ángel Nieto Team||1:30.883||0.914||83 / 89|
|14||ROSSI, Valentino||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:30.888||0.919||22 / 65|
|15||NAKAGAMI, Takaaki||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||1:30.901||0.932||78 / 83|
|16||SMITH, Bradley||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||1:31.113||1.144||38 / 79|
|17||ESPARGARO, Aleix||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:31.130||1.161||18 / 65|
|18||MORBIDELLI, Franco||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||1:31.185||1.216||47 / 68|
|19||KALLIO, Mika||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||1:31.598||1.629||95 / 99|
|20||REDDING, Scott||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:31.637||1.668||20 / 67|
|21||ABRAHAM, Karel||Ángel Nieto Team||1:31.661||1.692||68 / 72|
|22||LUTHI, Thomas||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||1:31.994||2.025||36 / 71|
|23||SYAHRIN, Hafizh||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:31.998||2.029||37 / 49|
|24||SIMEON, Xavier||Reale Avintia Racing||1:32.267||2.298||55 / 60|