Marquez Sets Scorching Pace in Argentina

Marc Marquez - Photo Credit:

Marc Marquez laid down a daunting marker for the opposition by topping the practice timesheets on Friday in Argentina. The world champion led Cal Crutchlow and Dani Pedrosa on the combined leaderboard as Honda riders excelled around the twisty Termas de Rio Hondo circuit, a stark contrast to the factory Ducati runners.

Pedrosa had ended the morning session as the rider to beat and with the rain flags flying early in FP2, the Spaniard’s 1:40.303 took some time to be challenged. Marquez looked the only rider capable of matching his team-mate, leading the session by over a second at one point, and a flurry of new-tyre runs late on saw Marc produce a scintillating 1:39.395, nine tenths quicker than Pedrosa.

Crutchlow cut the gap with a 1:39.799 on his late qualifying simulation, the only other rider inside 100 seconds, while Pedrosa’s FP1 time was enough to keep him inside the top three. Tito Rabat was a surprising fourth for Avintia, ensuring Ducati got at least one rider inside the top ten, with Suzuki’s Andrea Iannone next up in fifth.

After looking in danger of missing the Q2 cut once again, Maverick Vinales leapt up into sixth in the dying seconds, edging out Yamaha team-mate Valentino Rossi, while Alex Rins, Johann Zarco and Jack Miller rounded out the top ten. With rain potentially set to disrupt FP3 on Saturday morning, this may leave championship leader Andrea Dovizioso stranded in fifteenth, forcing him to compete in Q1.


2018 Gran Premio Motul de la Republica Argentina: (Friday Practice)

PosRiderConstructorTeamBest Time 
193. Marc MarquezHondaRepsol Honda Team1:39.395FP2
235. Cal CrutchlowHondaLCR Honda Castrol1:39.799FP2
326. Dani PedrosaHondaRepsol Honda Team1:40.303FP1
453. Tito RabatDucatiReale Avintia Racing1:40.346FP2
529. Andrea IannoneSuzukiTeam Suzuki ECSTAR1:40.386FP1
625. Maverick VinalesYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:40.510FP2
746. Valentino RossiYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:40.577FP2
842. Alex RinsSuzukiTeam Suzuki ECSTAR1:40.592FP2
95. Johann ZarcoYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:40.614FP1
1043. Jack MillerDucatiAlma Pramac Racing1:40.715FP1
1119. Alvaro BautistaDucatiAngel Nieto Team1:40.766FP2
1241. Aleix EspargaroApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:40.800FP2
1345. Scott ReddingApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:40.839FP2
149. Danilo PetrucciDucatiAlma Pramac Racing1:40.863FP2
154. Andrea DoviziosoDucatiDucati Team1:40.938FP1
1699. Jorge LorenzoDucatiDucati Team1:41.019FP1
1755. Hafizh SyahrinYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:41.094FP1
1838. Bradley SmithKTMRed Bull KTM Factory Racing1:41.198FP2
1944. Pol EspargaroKTMRed Bull KTM Factory Racing1:41.355FP1
2030. Takaaki NakagamiHondaLCRHonda IDEMITSU1:41.357FP2
2121. Franco MorbidelliHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:41.538FP1
2217. Karel AbrahamDucatiAngel Nieto Team1:41.784FP2
2312. Thomas LuthiHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:41.898FP2
2410. Xavier SimeonDucatiReale Avintia Racing1:42.192FP1