Dani Pedrosa might be flying solo at the second round of testing in Sepang, but it mattered little as he topped the time sheets in Malaysia at the end of the second of three days of this round of pre-season MotoGP testing.
Pedrosa had struggled with jet lag on arrival in Malaysia but the best time of the week so far put him ahead of Aleix Espargaro who impressed again with his sheer pace to end the day 0.281s off the top – having led for much of the afternoon.
With track conditions somewhat better than on Wednesday Pedrosa continued in the absence of his injured World Champion teammate Marc Marquez, who will not return to testing before the season opener at Qatar after breaking his leg in training. Although as expected it has now been confirmed that Marquez will not take part in the Phillip Island test.
“I’m obviously disappointed that I’m not in Sepang at the moment and to miss Phillip Island is also unfortunate, but we believe it is the best decision,” said Marquez.
“After my meeting today with (specialist) Dr. Mir, although he was happy with the general situation of my leg after only seven days since the accident, he advised against taking unnecessary risk. So I will take time to rest and get myself as fit as possible to return to Qatar for the first race in the best shape possible.”
Wednesday’s top man Alvaro Bautista was third, finishing with a 2’00.500s best time. Fourth on the timesheet was Valentino Rossi (+0.566s) who appears to be more comfortable with the new 2014 Bridgestone compounds than his Yamaha Factory Racing colleague Jorge Lorenzo (+1.010s) who was ninth. Lorenzo’s issue is with edge grip which affects corner speed, previously a strong point and something he will look to improve before Qatar.
Andrea Dovizioso repeated his impressive recent pace in fifth (0.748s) with the GP14 showing real signs of improvement.
The ‘Sepang2’ test concludes on Friday, before Ducati Team, Repsol Honda and Yamaha Factory Racing head to Phillip Island for a three day test starting on Monday.
TIMES: Day day 2 ‘Sepang2’ pre-season MotoGP testing
|1||PEDROSA, Dani||Repsol Honda Team||2:00.039||55 / 57|
|2||ESPARGARO, Aleix||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||2:00.320||0.281||0.281||39 / 41|
|3||BAUTISTA, Alvaro||GO&FUN Honda Gresini||2:00.500||0.461||0.180||52 / 55|
|4||ROSSI, Valentino||Yamaha Factory Racing||2:00.605||0.566||0.105||9 / 60|
|5||DOVIZIOSO, Andrea||Ducati Team||2:00.787||0.748||0.182||8 / 48|
|6||BRADL, Stefan||LCR Honda MotoGP||2:00.902||0.863||0.115||4 / 52|
|7||CRUTCHLOW, Cal||Ducati Team||2:00.952||0.913||0.050||50 / 52|
|8||ESPARGARO, Pol||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2:01.027||0.988||0.075||12 / 47|
|9||LORENZO, Jorge||Yamaha Factory Racing||2:01.049||1.010||0.022||30 / 57|
|10||SMITH, Bradley||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2:01.098||1.059||0.049||57 / 60|
|11||IANNONE, Andrea||Pramac Racing||2:01.173||1.134||0.075||23 / 49|
|12||HERNANDEZ, Yonny||Energy T.I. Pramac Racing||2:01.658||1.619||0.485||7 / 50|
|13||EDWARDS, Colin||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||2:01.996||1.957||0.338||25 / 45|
|14||HAYDEN, Nicky||Drive M7 Aspar||2:02.088||2.049||0.092||55 / 59|
|15||DE PUNIET, Randy||Team Suzuki MotoGP||2:02.139||2.100||0.051||59 / 60|
|16||BARBERA, Hector||Avintia Racing||2:02.149||2.110||0.010||43 / 45|
|17||REDDING, Scott||GO&FUN Honda Gresini||2:02.652||2.613||0.503||38 / 54|
|18||AOYAMA, Hiroshi||Drive M7 Aspar||2:02.786||2.747||0.134||70 / 72|
|19||PIRRO, Michele||Ducati Test Team||2:02.799||2.760||0.013||25 / 45|
|20||NAKASUGA, Katsuyuki||Yamaha Factory Test Team||2:02.802||2.763||0.003||47 / 48|
|21||DI MEGLIO, Mike||Avintia Racing||2:03.946||3.907||1.144||50 / 51|
|22||ABRAHAM, Karel||Cardion AB Motoracing||2:05.198||5.159||1.252||4 / 25|
|23||AOKI, Nobuatsu||Team Suzuki MotoGP||2:07.462||7.423||2.264||19 / 20|