Positive start to first Thai GP for Marquez and Pedrosa in amazingly tight free-practice day2018-10-05 08:31
It was a positive beginning to the inaugural Grand Prix of Thailand for the Repsol Honda team when points-leader Marc Marquez finished fourth overall, a mere 0.098” off the top, on a sunny and hot day one at the Buriram International Circuit.
In both FP1 and FP2, Marc completed several fast laps immediately upon taking to the track, and then proceeded to work on his race pace, keeping a consistent, fast rhythm in both sessions.
There was also good progression through the day for Dani Pedrosa, who ended eighth overall, less than 3 hundredths of a second down on provisional pole-setter Andrea Dovizioso, after improving by over a second on his morning-session effort.
“I felt good on the bike today. Conditions are hot, but not unbearably hot! We worked in the same way as at the recent GPs, using the Friday sessions to try and understand the tyres, the bike and electronics setup, and the track conditions. Of course we pushed, but with a working plan in mind. The track surface was a bit slippery in the morning but it improved over the day. At the moment, the lap times are slower than in the test; I believe that’s because we have a different rear tyre that is working in a different way, so basically, we need to adapt the setup to it. Anyway, so far we’re working well and I feel comfortable with our race pace. Tomorrow we’ll see more clearly where we all are.”
“Today we worked a lot with the tyres and on understanding the track conditions, which improved quite a bit after the first session. We managed to try a few of the tyre specs that Michelin brought here because it will be important to find the best compromise between grip, traction and durability. Tomorrow we must continue working on this aspect, but so far I think we’ve done a good job. We’re improving our feeling step by step, and we have to keep up this progression.”
Free Practice Classification
Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Time/Gap
Andrea 4 ITA Ducati Team 1'31.090
Maverick 25 SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 1'31.121 / 0.031
Cal 35 GBR LCR Honda 1'31.164 / 0.074
Marc 93 SPA Repsol Honda Team 1'31.188 / 0.098
Danilo 9 ITA Alma Pramac Racing 1'31.238 / 0.148
Andrea 29 ITA Team Suzuki Ecstar 1'31.256 / 0.166
Source: Honda Racing Corporation
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