Marquez Strikes Late To Beat Rossi On Day One


Marc Marquez picked up where he left off in November by topping the timesheets on day one of the opening pre-season test of 2015 at Sepang. The world champion left it late to outpace Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi but ultimately ended the day a tenth clear of the man who finished runner-up to him both here, and in the 2014 championship.

Rossi had spent most of the day on top of the leaderboard having set a 2:00.380 shortly before lunchtime as Yamaha riders locked out the top three places but Marquez would have the last word, clocking a 2:00.262 in the final ten minutes of the day to strike the first blow of 2015.  Jorge Lorenzo was a tenth further back in third with Andrea Dovizioso giving Ducati a positive start to the new year in fourth, running an updated machine badged the GP14.3.

After setting the pace in the first couple of hours, Dani Pedrosa dropped to fifth with Pol Espargaro also falling out of the top three to an eventual sixth, falling off his Tech 3 Yamaha in the process. Andrea Iannone took his developmental Ducati to seventh ahead of leading open class rider Stefan Bradl while Bradley Smith led a trio of British riders on the bubble of the top ten.

Smith trailed his Tech 3 teammate Espargaro by seven tenths of a second in ninth although the Oxford rider was unconcerned by the deficit. Cal Crutchlow and Scott Redding were also satisfied with their day as they acclimatised to the factory Honda machinery they will have at their disposal. Crutchlow was tenth on a 2:01.713 with Redding two tenths further back in eleventh spot.

On their returns to MotoGP, Suzuki and Aprilia had eventful days with Aleix Espargaro having a minor trip through the gravel on his way to fourteenth, two seconds off the pace, while Alvaro Bautista was hot on his heels despite being halted by a mechanical failure this morning.

The honour of leading rookie went to Moto3 graduate Jack Miller on the open-spec LCR Honda, edging out Maverick Vinales by three tenths of a second in 19th and 21st respectively. Eugene Laverty was fractionally slower than the Spaniard with the Irishman impressing to finish just six tenths shy of his championship-winning teammate Nicky Hayden.

 

2015 MotoGP Testing: Sepang – February 4

1 Marc Marquez Honda Repsol Honda Team 2:00.262
2 Valentino Rossi Yamaha Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 2:00.380
3 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 2:00.521
4 Andrea Dovizioso Ducati Ducati Team 2:00.617
5 Dani Pedrosa Honda Repsol Honda Team 2:00.745
6 Pol Espargaro Yamaha Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2:00.930
7 Andrea Iannone Ducati Ducati Team 2:01.424
8 Stefan Bradl Forward Yamaha Forward Racing 2:01.556
9 Bradley Smith Yamaha Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2:01.707
10 Cal Crutchlow Honda CWM LCR Honda 2:01.713
11 Scott Redding Honda Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS 2:01.917
12 Michele Pirro Ducati Pramac Racing 2:01.951
13 Danilo Petrucci Ducati Pramac Racing 2:02.136
14 Aleix Espargaro Suzuki Team Suzuki MotoGP 2:02.225
15 Alvaro Bautista Aprilia Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 2:02.285
16 Hiroshi Aoyama Honda HRC 2:02.560
17 Nicky Hayden Honda Drive M7 Aspar 2:02.699
18 Hector Barbera Ducati Avintia Racing 2:02.700
19 Jack Miller Honda CWM LCR Honda 2:02.807
20 Katsuyuki Nakasuga Yamaha Yamaha Factory Test Team 2:03.092
21 Maverick Vinales Suzuki Team Suzuki MotoGP 2:03.164
22 Eugene Laverty Honda Drive M7 Aspar 2:03.295
23 Mike di Meglio Ducati Avintia Racing 2:03.878
24 Karel Abraham Honda AB Motoracing 2:03.879
25 Loris Baz Forward Yamaha Forward Racing 2:04.163
26 Marco Melandri Aprilia Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 2:04.502
27 Alex de Angelis ART Octo IodaRacing Team 2:04.673
28 Takumi Takahashi Honda HRC 2:04.719
29 Takuya Tsuda Suzuki Team Suzuki MotoGP 2:05.478
30 Michael Laverty Aprilia Aprilia Test Team 2:06.190