Marc Márquez tops timesheets on first day in Catalonia

2 minutes

Repsol Honda rider leads two Free Practice sessions held on Friday, with Pedrosa fourth and seventh on first day in Catalonia.

Marc Márquez tops timesheets on first day in Catalonia

I felt pretty good with the bike


Marc Márquez


After morning rainfall, the first session was undertaken on a wet track, which dried out progressively. Márquez and Pedrosa completed just 5 and 4 laps, respectively, in FP1.

With modifications to the track layout, the length of the Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya has gone from 4,655 to 4,652 metres.

The lap times at the end of the day were similar to those of a year ago with the previous chicane in place. Last season, Márquez rode a 1:45.194 in FP4 and in 1:43.589 in qualifying for pole position. Today he stopped the clock at 1:44.478.

Marc Márquez

Today I felt pretty good with the bike, as we already had a good base setup from the test we did here two weeks ago. In the afternoon we tried a few changes on the bike during our second run, but ultimately we preferred to go back to the setup from the test. We fit a new tyre and my last run was pretty good. We look forward to trying the hard Michelin rear tyre tomorrow, to understand what’s best for the race because it should be quite a bit warmer and therefore tough on tyres. We’ll try to keep the same level from today. The new track layout is different; the old one was more ‘natural,’ but ultimately it’s the same track and still enjoyable.

Dani Pedrosa

It was a bit strange today, as the track conditions were quite challenging compared to the test we did here some days ago, maybe because of this morning’s rain. We need to improve the feeling and the tyre life, as that will be a very important factor for the race. This is one of hardest tracks on the calendar from that point of view, so tomorrow our main target will be working on the setup to improve the consistency of the tyres and the lap times. Regarding the new chicane, we know that there’s a risk of a crashed bike ending up in the middle of the track, but we’ve already spoken about it in the last Safety Commission meeting in Mugello, so we’ll see. Anyway, at least it’s a very slow chicane, so this should make things less dangerous.

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