Márquez starts strongly on new Silverstone surface
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider Alex Márquez posted competitive times on the newly resurfaced Silverstone track to finish the first day of practice ahead of the British Grand Prix in sixth, while Xavi Vierge lapped within striking distance of the top 10.
- Sunny but breezy conditions meant Márquez and Vierge had two full dry 45-minute sessions to evaluate grip levels and tyre consumption on Silverstone’s smooth new surface.
- With track temperatures increasing from 32 to 50 degrees this afternoon, Márquez lapped inside the top six in both sessions, while Vierge was only 0.5s outside of the top six placings at the close of play.
Alex Márquez: 6th, 2:05.418, 31 laps, 183, km.
- Márquez was fourth fastest in a session that delivered impressively fast lap times in FP1, with Fabio Di Giannantonio’s brilliant hot lap of 2:05.777 setting a new all-time lap record.
- Márquez was comfortably inside the previous all-time lap record this morning and he improved by the big margin of 0.5s to maintain his position inside the top six, despite a late tumble at The Loop.
- Times were incredibly fast again during the second session and the all-time lap record was comfortably beaten again by Jorge Navarro, who logged the first sub-2:05 at Silverstone in Moto2.
“Practice is where you find the limits”
“I have to say the new tarmac is much better than last year and it has a lot of grip. I’m happy the new surface is so good because this is a track I enjoy riding at a lot. The focus of today was understanding the tyre options available because it is not easy with no previous data on this surface. There doesn’t seem to be a big difference between the two but now we must work to get more out of the soft tyre, which seems to have a little bit more potential than the hard. I need to improve my own riding style to be a bit more consistent but today was a positive start. I was struggling in the third sector and on my last lap I was pushing and made a mistake on the kerb on the inside at turn 14. I’m perfectly fine but practice is where you find the limits.”
Xavi Vierge: 16th, 2:05.963, 30 laps, 177 km.
- A lap of 2:06.689 on his 12th of a 15-lap stint in FP1 placed the Spaniard in 17th position, which was less than one second away from di Giannantonio’s early record-breaking speed.
- Crucial set-up tweaks allowed Vierge to shave 0.7s off his lap time this afternoon as he went in search of spot inside the top 10.
- Unfortunately, Vierge encountered heavy traffic in the decisive final moments of the second session that prevented him from breaking into the top 14 required to secure a provisional place in Q2.
“The new asphalt because it is much better than last year”
“Today was very positive right from the first lap I completed. I really enjoyed riding with the new asphalt because it is much better than last year. This morning we had a few small problems with our base setting but we made some positive changes for FP2 and from the beginning of that session I felt confident and it allowed me to focus a lot on my race pace. We’ve done a good job and it is a shame about the final position but once again I came across too much traffic when I was pushing to improve my time. I’m optimistic without any traffic in the key moments of FP3 I can make one good lap to take me through into Q2.”