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Jul 19, 2013

Crutchlow Leads Opening MotoGP Practice At Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

FIM MotoGP World Championship: Cal Crutchlow (35).
Cal Crutchlow led Friday’s first MotoGP Practice session at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. The 27-year-old Briton lapped the 2.2-mile round course in 1:22.757 on his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YZR-M1.

Cructhlow’s time came late in the session and displaced Valentino Rossi from the top spot. Rossi’s best effort on his Factory Yamaha YZR-M1, a 1:22.848, ranked him second-best in the practice.

Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda’s young phenomenon, was third-quickest in the session with a time of 1:22.980 even though it was 20-year-old Spaniard’s first time ever riding on the challenging track.

Marquez’s teammate Dani Pedrosa and Rossi’s teammate Jorge Lorenzo, both suffering from left collarbone/shoulder injuries, were both declared medically fit prior to the start of the session. Lorenzo completed eight laps during the practice, recording an 11th-fastest 1:24.441. Pedrosa, however, chose to sit out the session and save his strength for Free Practice Two, according to Dorna.

Americans Nicky Hayden and Colin Edwards were eighth and 18th, respectively, at the end of the practice. Hayden did a 1:23.927 on his factory Ducati prototype, while Edwards managed a 1:25.664 on his CRT-class NGM Mobile Forward Racing FTR-Kawasaki.

The top CRT-class rider was Avintia Blusens’ Aleix Espargaro, who was seventh-fastest overall with a 1:23.905 on his ART-Aprilia. Espargaro’s bike stopped on track at the end of the session, however.

American Wild Card entry Blake Young finished the session ranked 21st out of the 23 riders who rode in the session. Young did a 1:26.668 on his Kawasaki-powered Attack Performance Racing (APR) machine, placing him well within the 107% qualifying cut-off time of 1:28.549.

There were no crashes during the 45-minute session.

FIM MotoGP World Championship
Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
Monterey, California
July 19, 2013
Free Practice One Results (all on Bridgestone tires):

1. Cal CRUTCHLOW, UK (YAMAHA), 1:22.757
2. Valentino ROSSI, Italy (YAMAHA), 1:22.848
3. Marc MARQUEZ, Spain (HONDA), 1:22.980
4. Stefan BRADL, Germany (HONDA), 1:23.033
5. Alvaro BAUTISTA, Spain (HONDA), 1:23.255
6. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Italy (DUCATI), 1:23.380
7. Aleix ESPARGARO, Spain (ART-Aprilia), 1:23.905
8. Nicky HAYDEN, USA (DUCATI), 1:23.927
9. Bradley SMITH, UK (YAMAHA), 1:24.287
10. Randy DE PUNIET, France (ART-Aprilia), 1:24.363
11. Jorge LORENZO, Spain (YAMAHA), 1:24.441
12. Hector BARBERA, Spain (FTR-Aprilia), 1:24.467
13. Alex DE ANGELIS, San Marino (DUCATI), 1:25.133
14. Yonny HERNANDEZ, Colombia (ART-Aprilia), 1:25.309
15. Karel ABRAHAM, Czech Republic (ART-Aprilia), 1:25.394
16. Hiroshi AOYAMA, Japan (FTR-Kawasaki), 1:25.451
17. Danilo PETRUCCI, Italy (IODA/SUTER-BMW), 1:25.594
18. Colin EDWARDS, USA (FTR-Kawasaki), 1:25.664
19. Claudio CORTI, Italy (FTR-Kawasaki), 1:25.770
20. Michael LAVERTY, UK (PBM-Aprilia), 1:26.659
21. Blake YOUNG, USA (APR-Kawasaki), 1:26.668
22. Bryan STARING, Australia (FTR-Honda), 1:26.753
23. Lukas PESEK, Czech Republic (IODA/SUTER-BMW), 1:27.825
24. Dani PEDROSA, Spain (HONDA), no time recorded

More, from a press release issued by Repsol Honda:

Confident start for Marquez in first outing at Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix

This morning at a cold and misty Laguna Seca, Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez completed his first session in preparation for this weekend's Grand Prix. Marc did a total of three exits and 23 laps with his fastest time of 1'22.980 arriving on his final lap and placing him 3rd fastest, just 0.223s off the top time.

His teammate, Dani Pedrosa, did not take part in FP1. After being declared fit this morning by the circuit's medical team following his crash in Germany, Dani chose to sit out this morning's session and will wait for FP2 this afternoon when track conditions are hopefully warmer.

Marc Marquez 3rd 1'22.980
"This morning I felt good on the bike, especially at the end, but at the moment the lap times are pretty slow as the track conditions weren't so good. It was difficult to find confidence as it was foggy and misty with some water gathering on the visor, but thankfully the sun is coming out now so I hope this afternoon will be better! We still need to improve in a few areas as this is our first time here with a different racing line and we need to work on different set ups"

Dani Pedrosa DNS
"I'm feeling a little better and decided to wait for this afternoon before going out on track. I haven't done any exercise since the crash which was almost a week ago so I still don't know my level. I need to go out and see how I feel, this is a difficult track with no areas to rest, so it will be hard but we'll try this afternoon"

More, from a press release issued by Pramac Racing:

First practice session for Alex De Angelis at Laguna Seca

Alex De Angelis finished his first free practice session at Laguna Seca with 13th place and a time of 1'25.133.

Alex De Angelis – Ignite Pramac Racing Team
“It was a great first session. I have to say that I never expected to go so well. The track is fantastic, I enjoyed it right from the start, I think I manage to defend myself quite well, putting a few riders behind me. We were mainly focused on putting the laps in and nothing else, the goal was to acquire data and experience. My lines are obviously different from those of the other riders, because they are still linked to my Moto2 style, but I am not afraid to open the throttle. Now I am ready for the second free practice session.”
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