Márquez ends season on a high with positive Jerez test
Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Moto2 rider Álex Márquez brought his 2016 Moto2 campaign to a close with a very positive two-day test at the Jerez circuit in southern Spain.
Márquez was the sole Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider on track at Jerez, as Franco Morbidelli was forced to sit out the test due to influenza. This meant that the 20-year-old faced an exhaustive test schedule, as he shouldered responsibility alone for testing upgraded components from both Kalex and Öhlins.
The former Moto3 World Champion completed 81 laps on the opening day, posting a time of 1'42.478 on lap 79 to finish second on the timesheet, just 0.297s adrift of Takaaki Nakagami.
Márquez continued to focus on the test plan on day two, completing 82 laps as he evaluated more upgrades on his Kalex Moto2 machine. A time of 1'42.302 posted just before the lunch break meant he again finished second on the timesheet, but closed the gap to Nakagami to just 0.022s.
Álex Márquez: 2nd – 163 laps – 1'42.302
“Over the course of the two days here in Jerez we've tested a lot of things on the bike, many more than was originally planned as, unfortunately, Franco was unable to ride because he was sick. Overall it's been a very positive test with which to end the season and, having tested a lot of the 2017 components, we go into the winter break with a clear direction to follow when testing resumes next year. The lap times were good, but I wasn't the fastest, so we still have some work to do ahead of the new season, but now it's time to take a break before training starts again ready for next year.”
Naoya Kaneko: Chief Mechanic, Álex Márquez:
“The original plan was to split the testing between Álex and Franco, but that wasn't possible because of Franco's illness. To ensure Kalex and Öhlins got the data they needed to continue development over the winter, we decided to complete the whole test plan with just Álex, which meant a lot of work for him and the mechanics. But it's been a very positive test; the lap time on both new and used tyres was good but, more importantly, we were able to complete back-to-back comparisons between the 2016 and the evolution components and provide the data needed to make the next step ahead of the pre-season tests next year.”