Márquez starts strong in Brno practice
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Álex Márquez showed today why is being tipped to battle for a maiden Moto2 World Championship podium at the Brno track in the Czech Republic on Sunday.
The 20-year-old Spaniard came flying out of the gate in stunning fashion in this morning’s FP1 session, which took place under threatening grey clouds and cooler temperatures than expected.
Márquez posted the fastest time of 2.02.611 this morning to lead the field by 0.160s, with only Jonas Folger, Takaaki Nakagami and Danny Kent lapping within half-a-second of his fastest pace.
In considerably hotter conditions this afternoon, Márquez opted to dedicate the majority of his time on track to fine-tuning the race set-up of his Kalex machine on Dunlop’s hard option rear tyre rather than pushing for one hot lap on softer rubber.
As a result he slipped down the rankings to sixth on the combined standings but his pace on worn tyres suggests Márquez will be a leading protagonist in Sunday’s 20-lap race.
Franco Morbidelli had a solid start to round 11 at the 5.4km Czech Republic track and a best lap of 2.03.246 saw him finish comfortably inside the top six this morning.
Morbidelli did pick up his pace in the second session and he found an improvement of almost 0.5s to end day one in an encouraging 11th, as he goes in search of a third podium in the last four races.
Álex Márquez: 6th – 2’02.611
“We made a really good first day in Brno. I felt strong right from the beginning of FP1 because we made a test here during the summer break and that definitely helped. This afternoon my main concentration was on race pace and getting a good set-up on used tyres. I was happy with my pace on the hard rear tyre, so that gives me confidence for Sunday. I did put in a new soft tyre at the end of the session and I wasn’t completely comfortable. It doesn’t seem to suit my riding style, so we will check again tomorrow but right now I am faster on a 20-lap old hard tyre than a brand new soft tyre. We will definitely need to improve on the soft for qualifying but my rhythm for the race is really strong.”
Franco Morbidelli: 11th – 2’02.875
“To be honest I am not as fast as I expected to be today, so I can’t be completely satisfied. We struggled more than I thought but we were trying some test items and we gained a lot of important data today that should help us improve tomorrow. The main problem seems to be in the second and third sectors. They are the most technical parts of the track and I am not fast enough, but I am very optimistic that we can improve tomorrow.”