Dominique Aegerter has picked up at Indianapolis where he left off before the summer break, ending the first day of practice for the Moto2 class on top of the timesheets. The Swiss rider fought a close battle with Sandro Cortese, snatching back top spot right at the end. Cortese was left with 2nd spot, just a hundredth of a second off the time of Aegerter, while Tito Rabat took the 3rd fastest time, dragging Thom Luthi in his wake. Ant West showed excellent form to set the 5th best time in FP2.
Championship points leader Tito Rabat set the top time Friday in the first Moto2 practice at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Friday. Rabat grabbed he lead toward the end of the practice session with a 1’38.060 — good for four-hundredths of a second clear of second place.
Dominique Aegerter, who led for most of FP1, finished second in the initial session with Sam Lowes just a touch back in third. Sandro Cortese (4th) and Simone Corsi (5th) rounded out the top five.
Mika Kallio, second in the championship was well off the pace in 12th, over a second back.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams ahead of this weekend's Red Bull Indianapolis GP races:
Jorge Navarro to replace Livio Loi at Marc VDS
Gosselies, Belgium – 29 July 2014: Jorge Navarro will replace Livio Loi on the Marc VDS Racing Team’s Kalex-KTM Moto3 machine for the remainder of the 2014 season.
Navarro, currently second in the Spanish Moto3 Championship standings after taking his first win of the season at Albacete three weeks ago, will make his debut for the Marc VDS Racing Team at the Grand Prix of Indianapolis.
There are many ways for fans to follow MotoGP: on TV, via newspapers, magazines and websites, via the official Dorna-run MotoGP.com website. Since last year, a new option has been added: the MotoGP Live Experience mobile app. The Live Experience app allows you to keep up with the latest news on your smartphone or tablet, see the results of practice sessions and races, or follow the sessions and races via live timing. But is it any good?
With MotoGP about to get back on track after the short summer break, bike fans will start to gather at Indianapolis. Although the action revolves around the three Grand Prix classes on track at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, there is plenty more to be doing in and around the track and downtown Indianapolis. The highlights on Friday are the Riders for Health auction, where memorabilia and work by some of the top MotoGP photographers go on sale, to support MotoGP's adopted charity, and the Indy Mile, at the State Fairground.
This year's silly season – the endless speculation about who will end up riding where next year – has not so far lived up to the expectations from the start of the year. With all four factory Honda and Yamaha riders out of contract at the end of 2014, real fireworks were expected in the battle to secure signatures. That bidding war never unfolded, and with Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa back with Repsol Honda, Valentino Rossi already signed up to Movistar Yamaha, and Jorge Lorenzo looks likely to finalize his deal – a two-year contract with some kind of option to depart after a year – before the season resumes again in Indianapolis.
But silly season has been far from a disappointment. Over the past couple of weeks, the jostling for the remaining seats in MotoGP has really taken off, with the promise of wholesale changes taking place up and down the grid. With the exception of Pol Espargaro, who is expected to remain at Tech 3 for the second year of his two-year contract with Yamaha, just about every other seat on the grid could see a new occupant. The arrival of Suzuki and, it now appears, Aprilia offers four new factory seats to vie for, opening up new opportunities for the current crop of riders. The upgrading of Honda's RCV1000R makes the production Honda a more attractive proposition. And there looks set to be an influx of young talent into the class. The 2015 MotoGP grid could look very different, once you look past the top four.
While the factory line ups at Honda and Yamaha will be unchanged for next year, the factory Ducati team is likely to sport two new faces for 2015. Although Cal Crutchlow has a year to go on his contract with the Italian factory, neither party is particularly happy with the arrangement. Crutchlow has never really got over the shock of just how poorly the Ducati turns compared to the Yamaha he left behind, and has found it hard to keep his criticism to himself. Ducati, in turn, are not enamored of Crutchlow's forthright manner of speaking, nor of his criticism of the bike. Crutchlow's results have also been a disappointment to Ducati, although the Italian factory must bear some of the blame, given the many mechanical and electronics issue the bike has suffered. Ducati point to the performance of both Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone, though conceding that the two Italians have already had a year on the bike. For anyone who rode the Desmosedici GP13, the GP14 is a huge improvement. For anyone who rode a 2013 Yamaha M1, it is a complete disaster.
Despite some early promise, there has been much complaining of a lack of innovation from chassis builders in Moto2. the bikes have followed the same basic layout as all modern race bikes since the late 1980s: aluminium twin spar chassis and conventional suspension arrangements.The only real interest has come from wildcards. At Le Mans, the French Promoto Sport team raced their Transfiormer chassis, with some solid results. Beyond that, the bikes have been pretty much identikit.
The former England soccer player Gary Lineker once described the sport as follows: "Football is a simple game; 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans always win." It feels somehow fitting to paraphrase that quote on the day that the Germans play in the World Cup final. Motorcycle racing is a simple sport, where 23 people ride a MotoGP bike as fast as they can, and Marc Marquez always wins.
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams at the Sachsenring:
TWO CRASHES AND ONLY ONE POINT FOR THE JUNIOR TEAM GO&FUN MOTO3 IN GERMANY
The German Grand Prix held today at the Sachsenring circuit saw the Junior Team GO&FUN Moto3 collecting only one point after a race disrupted by two crashes.