Barcelona Moto2 Test: Day 3 Sees More Time Lost To Wet Weather

The gods have not looked kindly on the advent of the Moto2 class. Nearly every time the new bikes have taken to the track for testing, the elements have intervened, throwing wind, rain and even snow into the paths of the CBR600-engined prototypes. The final day of testing at Barcelona was no different, the day starting wet and the track only drying out some time after 2pm, leaving precious little time for the riders to work further on developing and setting up their brand new Moto2 machines.

Despite the conditions and the lack of track time, the majority of riders still at the circuit did manage to improve their times. Once again, it was Shoya Tomizawa who was fastest, sharing the honor on Friday with Julian Simon and Yuki Takahashi. In the unofficial standings, Jules Cluzel was awarded the 4th fastest time, ahead of Ant West on the MZ.

But twelve riders finished the test within a second of each other, though being unofficial and self-reported, the lap times need to be treated with an artery-clogging helping of salt. A potential lead group seems to be appearing, but given the well-reported difference in engine tune being used, it is hard to judge just how much difference in time is being disguised by superior engines.

Piecing together the information from a couple of reliable sources, the two Japanese riders - Tomizawa on the Technomag-CIP Suter and Takahashi on the Tech 3 bike - are the strongest of the field so far, with American Kenny Noyes on the Jack&Jones Promo-Harris not far behind. Tomizawa, Takahashi and Noyes are all using engines in a pretty mild state of tune, compared to others - such as Ant West, Julian Simon and Stefan Bradl - who are using Supersport-spec engines to help get their riders up to speed.

The subterfuge will be over in less than ten days' time, as the bikes return to Valencia (and not Jerez, as we previously erroneously reported) fitted with the official Honda powerplants, which should be the same for everyone. From that point on, the gaps will be attributable to the riders and their chassis, rather than the vagaries of different specs of motor.

That test, from March 1st to 3rd, will see the grid further expanded. Gabor Talmacsi of the Speed Up team will take delivery of the FTR M210 machine to replace the standard Honda CBR600RR he's been using to get used to the bike and the Dunlop spec tire. Talmacsi will be joined by his teammate Andrea Iannone, the team having decided to wait until the new spec of the FTR machine was available, rather than first testing the M209 version which Alex Debon has been running so far.

Debon should also be back at Valencia, after having a titanium plate fitted to fix the collarbone the Spaniard fractured on Wednesday. Barcelona's other big casualty, Roberto Rolfo, will not be present at Valencia, the Italian's dislocated shoulder putting him out of action for up to four weeks.

In the 125 class, Pol Espargaro took a firm grip on proceedings, finishing the three day test on top of the pile. The Spaniard finished two tenths ahead of Nico Terol, and over half a second quicker than his teammate Efren Vazquez. British rider Bradley Smith made a cautious start to his season, matching the pace of Vazquez and working slowly and steadily on the setup of his Aspar Aprilia.

Times courtesy of MotoGP.com

Moto2  
Pos Rider Team Bike Time Day
1 Julian Simon Mapfre Aspar Team RSV 1'49.3 Friday
2 Shoya Tomizawa Technomag-CIP Suter MMX 1'49.3 Friday
3 Yuki Takahashi Tech 3 Racing Tech 3 1'49.3 Friday
4 Jules Cluzel Forward Racing Suter MMX 1'49.4 Friday
5 Anthony West MZ MZ 1'49.4 Friday
6 Yonni Hernández Blusens STX BQR 1'49.6 Thursday
7 Kenny Noyes Jack&Jones by A. Banderas Promo-Harris 1'49.9 Thursday
8 Mike di Meglio Mapfre Aspar Team RSV 1'50.0 Friday
9 Roberto Rolfo Italtrans STR Suter MMX 1'50.0 Thursday
10 Claudio Corti Forward Racing Suter MMX 1'50.1 Thursday
11 Stefan Bradl Viessmann Kiefer Racing Suter MMX 1'50.3 Friday
12 Alex Baldolini Caretta Technology ICP 1'50.3 Thursday
13 Raffaele De Rosa Tech 3 Racing Tech 3 1'50.5 Friday
14 Sergio Gadea Pons Racing Kalex Pons 1'50.5 Friday
15 Fonsi Nieto G22 HolidayGym Moriwaki 1'50.7 Friday
16 Axel Pons Pons Racing Kalex Pons 1'50.7 Friday
17 Dominique Aegerter Technomag-CIP Suter MMX 1'50.7 Friday
18 Thomas Luthi Interwetten Moriwaki Racing Moriwaki 1'50.8 Friday
19 Scott Redding Marc VDS Racing Team Suter MMX 1'51.1 Friday
20 Mashel Al Naimi Blusens STX BQR 1'51.2 Thursday
21 Robertino Pietri Italtrans STR Suter MMX 1'51.7 Friday
22 Joan Olivé Jack&Jones by A. Banderas Promo-Harris 1'51.9 Thursday
23 Vladimir Leonov Vector Kiefer Racing Suter MMX 1'52.3 Friday 
24 Karel Abraham Cardion AB Motoracing RSV 1'52.8 Thursday 
25 Vincent Lonbois Marc VDS Racing Team Suter MMX  1'52.8  Thursday
26 Yannick Guerra G22 HolidayGym Moriwaki  1'53.2 Friday 
   
125cc  
1 Pol Espargaró Bainet Derbi Derbi  1'52.9 Friday 
2 Nicolás Terol Bancaja Aspar Team Aprilia  1'53.2 Thursday 
3 Efrén Vázquez Bainet Derbi Derbi  1'53.5 Thursday 
4 Bradley Smith Bancaja Aspar Team Aprilia  1'53.5 Friday 
5 Esteve Rabat Blusens STX Aprilia  1'53.9 Thursday 
6 Marc Márquez Red Bull Ajo Motorsport Derbi  1'54.0 Thursday 
7 Alberto Moncayo Andalucia Cajasol Aprilia  1'54.8 Thursday 

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