Marquez ends Sepang pre-season test on top

Marc Marquez

Marc Marquez

Reigning world champion Marc Marquez sent a message to his rivals by setting the fastest time in the second MotoGP pre-season test at Sepang.

After being hampered by a brake problem on the opening day, the factory Honda rider topped the final two days of the test clocking a best time of 1.59.115s.

The effort was 0.322s quicker than his nearest rival Jorge Lorenzo on the works Yamaha, who shaved more than two seconds off his time over the three days.

Marquez spent the majority of the test evaluating different chassis types with the Spaniard racking up 73 laps, which was the most mileage of any rider on the final day.

Britain’s Cal Crutchlow produced arguably the surprise of the final day with the LCR Honda rider setting the third fastest time overall.

His Australian team-mate Jack Miller continued to acclimatise to the Open Class premier class machine improving his outright pace each day.

The 20-year-old Queenslander set his best time on the final morning with his 2.01.593s lap good enough for 22nd position out of the 27 rider field.

Meanwhile, Ducati’s Andrea Iannone showed strong pace throughout with the Italian fourth overall in front nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi, Monster Yamaha’s Bradley Smith and Honda’s Dani Pedrosa.

The teams will devote Thursday’s on track running to a Michelin tyre test.

The MotoGP field will reconvene for the third and final test at Qatar’s Losail circuit from March 14-17.

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