MotoGP – All The Action From Day 1

October 22, 2011

125cc, Moto2, MotoGP

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The Repsol Honda team swept the first day of the Shell Advance Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix, with Dani Pedrosa leading the timesheet and factory Honda 1-2-3 by a full eight-tenths of a second ahead of Casey Stoner and 1.3s ahead of Andrea Dovizioso.

Pedrosa dominated the MotoGP field on Friday, leading an all-Honda top five with a blistering best lap of 2’01.250, six-tenths quicker than the circuit race lap record. Stoner followed in second with a time of 2’02.070 with Dovizioso setting the third fastest time across both Friday practice sessions. The Italian rider was one of only two riders who did not improve on their morning practice times in the afternoon session.

San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Marco Simoncelli was fourth with a time of 2’02.823, with his team-mate Hiroshi Aoyama completing the top five and lapping one-tenth behind the Italian.

Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) was the first Yamaha in the timings with a best effort of 2’02.991, and Rizla Suzuki’s Álvaro Bautista followed the Texan by 0.132s to land seventh for the day. Pramac Racing’s Randy de Puniet was the first Ducati in the timings, the Frenchman the final within two seconds of Pedrosa’s time, followed by Ben Spies (Yamaha Factory Racing) in ninth.

Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing) completed the top ten of the day with a 2’03.318, one-tenth quicker than Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team) in 11th and three-tenths ahead of Valentino Rossi’s Ducati in 13th. Wildcard John Hopkins (Rizla Suzuki) was 14th for the day, and Héctor Barberá (Mapfre Aspar) completed 11 laps in FP2, following a curtailed morning session to land 17th as the Spanish rider recovers from surgery on the fractured collarbone he sustained in Japan.

Replacement rider for injured Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, Katsuyuki Nakasuga, started the day strong but crashed in both sessions, ending the day in 18th.

Moto2:

Stefan Bradl was the quickest Moto2 rider of the day with Aleix Espargaró and Dominique Aegerter in second and third. Bradl’s Championship rival Marc Márquez elected to sit out the afternoon session in order to fully recover after a crash in the morning run.

Viessmann Kiefer Racing’s Bradl edged Espargaró (Pons HP 40) by two-hundredths of a second for the top spot in the final practice of the day and was a tenth quicker than FP1 leader Aegerter (Technomag-CIP) with a best effort of 2’08.464.

Michele Pirro (Gresini Racing Moto2) stepped up to the fourth spot for the day with a best lap of 2’08.594, a margin of 0.015s ahead of Thomas Lüthi (Interwetten Paddock Moto2) who completed the top five with a best lap of 2’08.609.

Alex de Angelis (JiR Moto2) was seven-thousandths off the Swiss rider in sixth, with Simone Corsi (Ioda Racing Project) just behind Australian GP winner De Angelis. Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing) was eighth for the day with a time of 2’08.970, followed by Claudio Corti (Italtrans Racing) and Yuki Takahashi (Gresini Racing) who completed the top ten.

There were no fewer than 11 crashes in the session, with a highside for Ricky Cardús (QMMF Racing Team) resulting in a fractured left wrist for the Spanish rider which means he will be unable to ride on Sunday.

Following a crash in a wet Turn 10 in the first practice outing, Márquez (Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol) decided to sit out the second free practice session in order to fully recover for Saturday’s FP3 and QP. Jules Cluzel (NGM Forward Racing) and Bradley Smith (Tech 3 Racing) also both went down in the same corner at the same time, with Smith suffering a fractured collarbone and a chest contusion and therefore unable to continue this weekend.

Following the incident, Race Direction deemed the marshals had not displayed the appropriate flag at Turn 10 and a decision was made to fine the organiser €15,000.

125cc:

Championship leader Nico Terol finished the first day on top of the 125cc free practice timesheets ahead of FP1 leader Sandro Cortese and Efrén Vázquez in third.

While Cortese (Intact Racing Team Germany) was fastest in the morning session, Terol (Bankia Aspar) took over as the quickest 125 rider with his afternoon time, six-tenths ahead of the German rider in second as the Spanish rider improved his time by 1.148s from the morning.

Currently fighting for fifth in the Championship, Vázquez (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo) and Héctor Faubel (Bankia Aspar) were third and fourth, with Vázquez improving his FP1 time by a second and a half with a 2’14.492 to move to third. Faubel stepped up seven-tenths to land fourth for the day, 0.211s behind the Avant-AirAsia-Ajo rider.

Terol’s only title rival, Johann Zarco (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo), was two-tenths behind Faubel in fifth after stepping up his pace by over a second, followed by Danny Kent (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) in seventh and Maverick Viñales (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing). Luis Salom (RW Racing GP) bounced back after a morning crash to rank eighth in the timings, ahead of Bankia Aspar’s Adrián Martín and Jonas Folger (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) tenth, the German was the final rider within two seconds of the leading time set by Terol.

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