Honda factory rider Marc Marquez was the timesheet leader in Day 3 of the Malaysian MotoGP test, with teammate Dani Pedrosa in second and Ducati’s Andrea Iannone in third.
Marquez had the fastest-ever lap at Sepang, a 1:58.867 lap, up 00:00.139 on Pedrosa, but Pedrosa was particularly impressive in race simulation, as he had 10 consecutive laps under 2:01:00. Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo (who finished fifth on the timesheet) also did well in the simulation, although a bit behind Pedrosa. Valentino Rossi, Yamaha’s other factory rider, was ahead of Lorenzo in fourth, but spent much of the race simulation changing electronics settings, working on engine mapping and trying a new swingarm.
At the end of the test, Rossi said he was pleased with his results.
“It was a good day and we did a good job, especially because we tested everything and we decided what we have to use to continue the development,” he said. “I’m very happy because 1’59.4 is my best lap in Sepang in my whole career and I’m already 0.3 faster compared to last year.”
Lorenzo said the team had been adjusting their braking setup earlier in the day, and when they got that figured out, their tires weren’t capable of posting top times, but overall, the test left him feeling good about his team’s chances.
“The race simulation was interesting,” he said. “We did one at the time of day when the temperature was the highest and our pace was very consistent. I think that if there was a race tomorrow, we could fight for the win.”
But all the positivity in the world won’t change the fact that Marc Marquez seems to be ready to repeat as world champ.
“I’m glad I was able to set a good lap, but more important is the fact that I felt very comfortable, right from the start,” Marquez said.” We did a race simulation later on, which also went very well and was perhaps even more important than a single lap …The positive is that with the new bike we are already at the same level as in 2014, and there is still plenty of room for improvement.”
The other factory teams also had to be happy with their results, with Suzuki’s riders putting up a a good show and Ducati once again landing a rider in the top three. Marc Marquez looks like he’ll win again this year, but the battle for all other positions could be very, very interesting.
The timesheet for Day 3 of the Sepang test is below.
|Pos||Rider||Team||Fastest lap||Lead. Gap||Prev. Gap||Laps||Last lap|
|1||MARQUEZ, Marc||Repsol Honda Team||1:58.867||8 / 52|
|2||PEDROSA, Dani||Repsol Honda Team||1:59.006||0.139||0.139||11 / 41|
|3||IANNONE, Andrea||Ducati Team||1:59.388||0.521||0.382||11 / 47|
|4||ROSSI, Valentino||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:59.401||0.534||0.013||11 / 49|
|5||LORENZO, Jorge||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:59.624||0.757||0.223||12 / 55|
|6||ESPARGARO, Pol||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:59.851||0.984||0.227||8 / 50|
|7||DOVIZIOSO, Andrea||Ducati Team||1:59.874||1.007||0.023||5 / 33|
|8||BRADL, Stefan||Forward Racing Team||2:00.294||1.427||0.420||10 / 49|
|9||SMITH, Bradley||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2:00.384||1.517||0.090||26 / 50|
|10||ESPARGARO, Aleix||Team Suzuki MotoGP||2:00.486||1.619||0.102||13 / 36|
|11||CRUTCHLOW, Cal||CWM LCR Honda||2:00.536||1.669||0.050||19 / 67|
|12||VIÑALES, Maverick||Team Suzuki MotoGP||2:00.964||2.097||0.428||12 / 51|
|13||PETRUCCI, Danilo||Pramac Racing||2:00.970||2.103||0.006||11 / 48|
|14||AOYAMA, Hiroshi||HRC||2:01.029||2.162||0.059||6 / 46|
|15||BARBERA, Hector||Avintia Racing||2:01.183||2.316||0.154||27 / 57|
|16||PIRRO, Michele||Pramac Racing||2:01.232||2.365||0.049||10 / 56|
|17||REDDING, Scott||Estrella Galicia 0.0 Marc VDS||2:01.263||2.396||0.031||65 / 67|
|18||HAYDEN, Nicky||Drive M7 Aspar||2:01.508||2.641||0.245||13 / 52|
|19||BAZ, Loris||Forward Racing Team||2:01.624||2.757||0.116||6 / 46|
|20||MILLER, Jack||CWM LCR Honda||2:01.895||3.028||0.271||3 / 50|
|21||BAUTISTA, Alvaro||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||2:01.924||3.057||0.029||60 / 63|
|22||DI MEGLIO, Mike||Avintia Racing||2:02.128||3.261||0.204||48 / 49|
|23||ABRAHAM, Karel||AB Motoracing||2:02.297||3.430||0.169||18 / 43|
|24||LAVERTY, Eugene||Drive M7 Aspar||2:02.334||3.467||0.037||55 / 57|
|25||NAKASUGA, Katsuyuki||Yamaha Factory Test Team||2:02.363||3.496||0.029||3 / 22|
|26||TAKAHASHI, Takumi||HRC||2:03.113||4.246||0.750||11 / 64|
|27||DE ANGELIS, Alex||Octo Ioda Racing Team||2:03.471||4.604||0.358||22 / 32|
|28||MELANDRI, Marco||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||2:03.641||4.774||0.170||61 / 61|