August 2nd, 2015
With the first two races today being exciting ones, the third race didn't need to be exciting for this year to be better than last year. But it was.
Kenan Sofuoglu leads the title chase by twenty points from Jules Cluzel going into this fourteen lap race.
The track was cooler than expected as the overcast weather held the sun off. Jonathan Rea, Max Biaggi and Leon Haslam chose a different front tyre to the rest of the grid. Last year, this track had events that determined the outcome of the championship and, with Rea able to leave this weekend crowned champion, this year seemed to be no different.
Press releases from the teams and series organizers after qualifying at Sepang:
Aprilia today issued the following press release, confirming that Stefan Bradl will race for the Gresini Aprilia team for the rest of the 2015 season, replacing Marco Melandri.
STEFAN BRADL TO RIDE AN APRILIA RS-GP ALONGSIDE ALVARO BAUTISTA
Noale, 1 August 2015 - Twenty-five year old German rider Stefan Bradl, 2011 Moto2 World Champion, will take part in the remaining nine 2015 MotoGP World Championship races astride the second Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia RS-GP alongside Alvaro Bautista.
Bradl will make his first appearance on the Aprilia RS-GP at the Indianapolis Grand Prix scheduled from 7 to 9 August.
World Supersport Qualifying brought a few surprises inclusing an interesting tactical play borrowed from Marc Marquez.
Superpole at the longest track of the year, with laps of over two minutes round the 5.543KM circuit, would not allow riders and teams as much time to relax. With no time to waste, and a lap too long for two good laps on the qualifying tyre, riders would get two laps on a race tyre and maybe only one on the qualifier. Ayrton Badovini missed the session after he got a concussion when he crashed with Matteo Baiocco in FP3. He will likely declared unfit for the races tomorrow.
Tom Sykes and Jonathan Rea were quickest in the untimed session ahead of Michael van der Mark and Jordi Torres. The Kawasakis set their fastest times of the weekend, showing they aim to challenge the Aprilias in qualifying.
Jules Cluzel, when faced with a complete dry session and a working bike, was quickest ahead of PJ Jacobsen and Kenan Sofuoglu finally beating Lorenzo Zanetti's Friday morning time.
Jordi Torres was quickest in the morning's session, ahead of Leon Haslam. Randy de Puniet was half a second off, third quickest in the session and qualifying fourth behind Max Biaggi, in his best provisional position of the year. Aprilia took the provisional front row ahead of De Puniet and Sylvain Guintoli.
Press releases after the first day of practice at Sepang:
Stefan Bradl's period of enforced unemployment will be mercifully brief. Today, the Forward Racing team announced they had released him from his contract at his request, as the problems facing the team continue. Free from his contract, Bradl looks set to sign for the Gresini Aprilia squad for the rest of the season, replacing Marco Melandri.
Bradl has been caught up in a whirlwind of events since breaking his scaphoid at Assen. Two weeks later, at the Sachsenring, the German was in talks with the Forward Racing team to extend his contract to race the Open class Yamaha for the 2016 season. The day after the race in Germany, team owner Giovanni Cuzari was arrested on his return home to Ticino, Switzerland, on charges of corruption, money laundering and tax evasion. Because of the charges, the Swiss authorities seized the team's computers and financial administration, and froze their bank accounts. The arrest also prompted a number of sponsors to end their contracts, further endangering the future of the team. The team announced that they would not be competing at Indianapolis, and that they could also end up missing Brno.
With the rain stopped at the end of the Supersport session, most riders waited for the track to dry, and only went out in the last third of the session. Chaz Davies was quickest on the drying tarmac, beating out Alex Lowes for the quickest lap, but was still seven seconds off the morning's pace.