Persistent drizzle and a wet track saw the final day of testing for the Moto2 and Moto3 classes at Valencia go to waste in much the same way that the second day did. Adding insult to injury, one bike dumped oil on the track between turns one and four, causing a long delay as the track was cleaned. By that time, most of the teams had already packed up and were heading south, off to Jerez where testing continues next week.
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The weather meant track time was severely limited on the second day of the combined Moto2 and Moto3 test at Valencia. With a wet track, most riders preferred not to risk injury by going out for laps, with little to be learned. Times for both classes were well off normal pace, so there was little point to riding. The enforced layoff was welcomed by Efren Vazquez, who fractured the navicular bone in his right foot in a crash yesterday. With no action on track, Vazquez could recover, and consider trying again on Thursday, the last day of the test.
With testing for the premier class at Sepang finished, the Moto2 and Moto3 riders took to the track at Valencia on Tuesday. Just about the entire field in both classes rolled out of the pits for the first test of the season, and with the weather improving as the day went on, times soon began to drop. By the end of the day, the fastest men in both classes were lapping under the official lap records.
Track conditions at Sepang were never as good again as they were in the morning, meaning that only a handful of riders improved their times by the end of the test, the riders choosing instead to get back to testing work and work on their long runs. That left Marc Marquez on top of the timesheets, with a new lap record and as the only rider every to have posted a 1'58 lap. Dani Pedrosa was second quickest, the Spaniard just missing out on a 1'58 lap, but not disappointed, as he made a mistake on hsi fast lap and could have gone faster.
The ideal weather conditions at the start of the last day of testing at Sepang triggered a veritable qualifying war in the first hour, from which Marc Marquez emerged the victor. The Repsol Honda rider was already fast on his first run, but then went on an all-out attack, smashing the existing lap record and becoming the first rider to crack the 1'59 barrier, posting a time of 1'58.867, a whole second faster than the rest of the field.
Increased heat at the end of the day saw no changes at the top of the standings, with only the riders behind Cal Crutchlow in 8th going fastest. Several riders said they were not really chasing lap times, the fast laps having been set during the morning. Thursday was all about set up work. With the test ending on Friday, tomorrow will be the day the riders put in a real time attack. The weather is expected to stay warm and dry, and allow another full day of testing.
Times at the end of day 2:
With the afternoon heat robbing the Sepang International Circuit of grip, little has changed on the MotoGP test timesheets since noon. Of the top 10, only Marc Marquez has improved his time, getting to within two tenths of fastest man Lorenzo. While riders are still out on track, the times won't start to drop until the last hour, once the temperature drops
Times at 3:45pm:
Weather conditions at Sepang continue to be idea for testing, and the riders are making the best of it. Jorge Lorenzo leads the times, having cracked the two minute barrier towards noon, displacing Andrea Dovizioso from top spot. The Repsol Hondas are 3rd and 4th quickest, while Andrea Iannone is 5th. Only Dovizioso is close to Lorenzo's time, while seven riders are within a second of the Spaniard's fast lap.
Jack Miller had an early tumble, falling at Turn 5, though he was uninjured.
Times at noon:
Marc Marquez finished the day at the top of the timesheets, after pushing hard at the end with a new tire. That put Marquez ahead of the two Movistar Yamaha riders, both of whom proclaimed themselves happy with how competitive they were, not having used a new tire for a fast lap. Andrea Dovizioso was similarly happy, ending very close to the top 3, and ahead of Dani Pedrosa on the second Repsol Honda.
Times at the end of day 1:
Little change on the timesheets at Sepang, after most of the riders avoided the worst heat of the afternoon. The track is getting a little busier now, with riders heading out to take advantage of cooling temperatures.
Times at just after 2pm:
Testing is underway at Sepang, under good conditions, with temperatures reasonable and humidity not too high. Marc Marquez leads after just two hours, but it had taken him a while to set the quickest time, Dani Pedrosa having led earlier, with the two factor Yamahas and Andrea Dovizioso also quick.
Times at 12:15pm
Testing at Jerez has wrapped up completely, with the final day once again plagued by heavy rain, cold temperatures and high winds. A slight improvement at the end of the day saw the two MV Agusta World Supersport bikes get a little closer to a normal lap time, though both Lorenzo Zanetti and Jules Cluzel were still 4 seconds slower than they were on Wednesday, when the bikes were out on a dry track.
Rain hampered the fourth day of the combined World Superbike, MotoGP and Moto2 test at Jerez. The circuit in Southern Spain was hammered by rain, high winds and cold temperatures, rendering the times set far from instructive. While the Ducatis continued to circulate without transponders, Tom Sykes was the fastest of the officially timed riders, though he was lapping over ten seconds slower than in the dry, the day before.
It was a busy track at Jerez, with more teams from various classes having converged on the circuit for the last couple of days testing. While the Suzuki factory MotoGP team has packed up and left, their place has been taken by the Ducati factory team, both MotoGP and World Superbike, along with the Forward Yamaha Open class team and Avintia Ducati. There were a number of Moto2 riders lapping here, rather than joining the Marc VDS Racing team and Gresini at Almeria, the Pons Kalex and QMMF teams taking to the track at Jerez.