More, from a press release issued by Dorna:
Quartararo bounces back to dominate Day 1 at Silverstone
Despite an FP2 crash, the Yamaha rider heads the timesheets after blasting back out the blocks even faster
Friday, 27 August 2021
Fabio Quartararo (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) shot out the blocks at Silverstone, the Championship leader ending Day 1 of the Monster Energy British Grand Prix over half a second clear despite an FP2 crash. Jack Miller (Ducati Lenovo Team) was second quickest, with Jorge Martin (Pramac Racing) also bouncing back, in his case from an FP1 tumble, to take third on first contact with Silverstone on MotoGP™ machinery.
Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) stole all the headlines in the morning. The eight-time World Champion was the fastest, and the only rider under the 2-minute barrier, but he also brought out the Red Flag for a fast crash through Maggots and Becketts. It was a lowside but a 270km/h lowside, leaving rider and bike sliding over the grass and gravel. The result was rider ok, bike not so much, and the Red Flag came out.
0.250 behind Marc Marquez was Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) as the Spaniard slotted into second, pipping Quartararo by 0.110. Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team), who had a grandstand seat for teammate Marquez’ slide in the closing stages, took fourth by just 0.035, with Miller closing out the top five within less than a tenth.
Jake Dixon (Petronas Yamaha SRT) made a solid first impression, ending FP1 on a 2:03.939 and only seven tenths off Luca Marini (Avintia VR46).
Alex Marquez (LCR Honda Castrol) crashed and Martin also went down, both at Turn 12 and both riders ok.
There was another headline-grabbing crash in the afternoon, this time for Quartararo. The Frenchman went down at Turn 8, avoiding a highside by letting go early, and was initially holding his ankle and appeared in some pain. He was able to walk away and head back to the garage, however, as well as heading back out on track and going… even faster. So he was quickest, with a whopping 0.512 in hand over Miller.
Martin bounced back from his FP1 crash to leap up into third late in FP2, with Pol Espargaro and Marc Marquez completing the top five as they retained some good speed. Marc Marquez later explained he did have some sand in his eye from the crash though, causing irritation and affecting his FP2 running. Heading to the hospital for the ok, the number 93 says it should be fine for Saturday.
Alex Marquez was the other crasher in the afternoon, after Quartararo.
FP2 timesheets are the combined timesheets as everyone improved, leaving Quartararo dominant after Day 1 ahead of Miller, Martin, Pol Espargaro and Marc Marquez.
Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati Lenovo Team) was sixth quickest, just ahead of Aleix Espargaro. Austrian GP winner Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) impressed with one of his best Fridays of the season so far, riding at the track for the first time in the premier class, as he took eighth.
2019 Silverstone winner Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was ninth, with Valentino Rossi (Petronas Yamaha SRT) completing the top ten on Day 1 after a solid day at the office for the ‘Doctor’ as he makes his last call at the British GP.
Reigning Champion Joan Mir (Team Suzuki Ecstar), riding at the track for the first time in MotoGP™ after having missed the 2019 edition through injury, was 13th.
Dixon shaved another 1.3 seconds off his best lap in the afternoon, getting to within around 1.2 of Alex Marquez and Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) ahead of him.
That’s a wrap on Friday, come back for more on Saturday as the grid gets decided from 14:10 (GMT +1)!
MotoGP™ Friday top five:
1 Fabio Quartararo – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP – Yamaha – 1:59.317
2 Jack Miller – Ducati Lenovo Team – Ducati – +0.512
3 Jorge Martin* – Pramac Racing – Ducati – +0.622
4 Pol Espargaro – Repsol Honda Team – Honda – +0.718
5 Marc Marquez – Repsol Honda Team – Honda – +0.734
*Independent Team rider
Raul Fernandez flies to the top at Silverstone
The rookie sensation goes fastest on Friday on first contact with Silverstone on a Moto2™ machine
Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo) may be a Moto2™ rookie and heading into Silverstone with less overall experience than many, but that didn’t stop him on Day 1 of the Monster Energy British Grand Prix. The Austria winner managed to pip 2019 Silverstone podium finisher Jorge Navarro (Lightech Speed Up) by just 0.017, with home hero Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) third overall but another three tenths back.
Navarro was the fastest rider in the morning, beating most recent Silverstone Moto2™ winner Augusto Fernandez (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) to the top by jut under a tenth and a half. The two had a huge advantage over the rest, with Championship leader Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo) in third but 0.582 off the top.
Raul Fernandez started his Silverstone Moto2™ debut well in fourth, 0.125 off Gardner, with Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team) making a leap back up the timesheets into the postcode more expected of the American as he took fifth – pipping home hero Lowes. The Brit was also the only faller of the session, but rider ok.
FP2 saw Raul Fernandez strike back. He was fastest, Navarro took over, and then the number 25 finally laid down his 2:04.501 to stay quickest. Lowes managed to leapfrog teammate Augusto Fernandez, and Gardner lurked in fifth.
Somkiat Chantra (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia), Albert Arenas (Kipin Energy Aspar Moto2) and Marco Bezzecchi (Sky Racing Team VR46) all crashed, riders ok.
The top 12 all set their best efforts in FP2, so it’s Raul Fernandez, Navarro, Lowes, Augusto Fernandez and Gardner in the top five.
Fabio Di Giannantonio (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) took sixth ahead of Bezzecchi, with Roberts in P8 as he retained good speed in the afternoon. Nicolo Bulega (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) was ninth quickest, with Aron Canet (Kipin Energy Aspar Team) rounding out the top ten.
Xavi Vierge (Petronas Sprinta Racing) was 11th, with Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) in P12 and the last of those on for a provisional place in Q2 who set their best in FP1.
Pertamina Mandalika SAG teammates Bo Bendsneyder and Tom Lüthi, the latter racing at the British GP for the final time before retiring, took P13 and P14 on the combined times thanks to their FP1 bests.
How will Saturday morning shuffle the pack? Find out from 10:55 (GMT +1) in FP3, before qualifying from 14:10.
Moto2™ Friday top five:
1 Raul Fernandez – Red Bull KTM Ajo – Kalex – 2:04.501
2 Jorge Navarro – Lightech Speed Up – Boscoscuro – +0.017
3 Sam Lowes – Elf Marc VDS Racing Team – Kalex – +0.314
4 Augusto Fernandez – Elf Marc VDS Racing Team – Kalex – +0.365
5 Remy Gardner – Red Bull KTM Ajo – Kalex – +0.414
Fenati supreme at Silverstone on Friday
The veteran Italian ends Day 1 ahead of the game, with Sasaki and Antonelli closest on the chase
Romano Fenati (Sterilgarda Max Racing Team) ends Day 1 of the Monster Energy British Grand Prix as the fastest man in Moto3™, the Italian taking to the top in both sessions to lay an early claim to Silverstone. By the end of play, Ayumu Sasaki (Red Bull KTM Tech3) had cut over half a second to a tenth and a half of advantage, with Niccolo Antonelli (Avintia VR46 Academy) returning from injury to get within 0.199 of the top.
Fenati absolutely dominated the timesheets in FP1. The Italian was six tenths clear of the field, although that field was led by Jeremy Alcoba (Indonesian Racing Gresini Moto3) despite the Spaniard never having raced at Silverstone. His teammate Gabriel Rodrigo was just half a tenth further back.
Sasaki was fourth, fast from the off and 0.060 ahead of Championship leader Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) as the rookie hit the ground running. His closest challenger – and the Austrian GP winner – Sergio Garcia (Valresa GASGAS Aspar Team) was 14th quickest.
John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) was unfortunately the first crasher at the British GP, but he was up and ok. Lorenzo Fellon (SIC58 Squadra Corse), Deniz Öncü (Red Bull KTM Tech3) and Stefano Nepa (BOE Owlride) also went down, riders ok.
Fenati was once again the man to beat, and had a similar advantage to the morning until the final few minutes. Sasaki was then able to cut that gap, and Antonelli too, with three riders in two tenths a lot more Moto3™-esque.
Riccardo Rossi (BOE Owlride) impressed to take P4, with Dennis Foggia (Leopard Racing) just 0.006 further back.
Filip Salač (CarXpert PrüstelGP) was the sole faller. He went down at Turn 1, rider ok.
All improved in the afternoon barring Alcoba and Yuki Kunii (Honda Team Asia), leaving the top 14 – and potential Q2-graduates – unchanged from the FP2 results.
Fenati, Sasaki, Antonelli, Rossi and Foggia are therefore the top five, with Darryn Binder (Petronas Sprinta Racing) slotting into sixth ahead of Deniz Öncü as the Turk bounced back from his FP1 crash. So did Fellon, and the French rookie impressed in P8.
Acosta is ninth on the combined timesheets ahead of Rodrigo, with Jaume Masia (Red Bull KTM Ajo), Izan Guevara (Valresa GASGAS Aspar Team) and Nepa the last set to move through as it stands. McPhee was the rider just denied, with Garcia down in P17.
Can Fenati keep the advantage on Saturday? The Italian took his first pole since 2017 last time out… find out how the grid will look from 12:35 (GMT +1) local time!
Moto3™ Friday top five:
1 Romano Fenati – Sterilgarda Max Racing Team – Husqvarna – 2:11.334
2 Ayumu Sasaki – Red Bull KTM Tech3 – KTM – +0.139
3 Niccolo Antonelli – Avintia VR46 Academy – KTM – +0.199
4 Riccardo Rossi – BOE Owlride – KTM – +0.384
5 Dennis Foggia – Leopard Racing – Honda – +0.390
More, from a press release issued by Tech3 KTM Factory Racing:
Lecuona misses out on top 10 just narrowly – Petrucci with decent FP1 in Silverstone
Although Iker Lecuona is riding the Silverstone Circuit on a MotoGP bike for the first time ever today, he showed some great progress throughout Friday. After finishing FP1 in P17, the Tech3 KTM Factory Racing rider improved by nearly two seconds in the second session of the weekend to conclude Friday in 11th, whereas he was missing out on the provisional Q2 spots by just 0.013 seconds.
In the meantime, Tech3 KTM Factory Racing’s Danilo Petrucci had a strong start to proceedings at the British Grand Prix with the 11th fastest time in Free Practice one. In FP2, the Italian went about half a second quicker than this morning. Yet, he concluded this fresh Friday in Great Britain in 18th overall.
“I’m very happy. This morning, I was working hard with the bike, we tried something on the base and I felt good on the last run with used tyres. This afternoon, we tried to improve this base even more. One more time, I managed to go faster by myself and later on following someone else. I felt really good, very strong with the bike. I tried to follow Marc (Marquez) and lost only a few tenths. I nearly ended up inside the top 10, so I’m very satisfied for myself and for my team. We will see, what is going to happen tomorrow, but we are there.”
“I was quite happy about the feeling I have, but like always I can’t really use the extra grip of the soft tyre. It’s an issue, as our pace is quite good, but I can’t really improve my lap time on one single fast lap. I’m very consistent, but somehow limited to go faster in order to make a step forward in the classification. We will try to improve our lap time tomorrow. I think we are in a good shape, but we have to have a better Qualifying compared to the other rounds and then we can manage a decent race.”
More, from a press release issued by Esponsorama Racing:
BASTIANINI AND MARINI’S FIRST TASTE AT SILVERSTONE
Silverstone (Great Britain), 27th August 2021
The Avintia Esponsorama and Sky VR46 Avintia riders took part in the first two free practice sessions of the Monster Energy British Grand Prix at Silverstone on Friday.
Enea Bastianini and Luca Marini finished the day in 12th and 17th position respectively in the combined free practice times. Bastianini set a best time of 2:00.548, while Marini stopped the clock at 2:01.058.
Both riders completed a good day of adaptation to the track, as it was the first time they had ridden a MotoGP bike at Silverstone.
Tomorrow at 10:55 (GMT +2), the third free practice will start, where Bastianini and Marini will fight for a position that will allow them to go directly to Q2.
#23 ENEA BASTIANINI
“It was a very cold day and not the best conditions. This morning we started off on the right foot and managed to put in some good laps. In the afternoon, on the hard rear tire, I didn’t feel quite right, so we focused on finding a good rhythm on the medium tire. We did some tests on the rear to try to get the bike to turn a bit better and with the soft tire I felt better than usually. I think we can take advantage of the strengths of the Ducati, we are ready for tomorrow and we will fight for the top-10.”
#10 LUCA MARINI
“It was a very cold Friday with very difficult track conditions. Due to the cold, I had very little grip during FP1 and I had some problems. In FP2 I started better and with the medium tire I felt good. It was a pity about the two time attacks, because we found a lot of traffic and I couldn’t use my full potential. The feeling is good and the Top-10 is not far away. We still have to improve in some aspects to fight for the direct access to Q2 in FP3 tomorrow.”
More, from a press release issued by Pramac Racing:
Silverstone GP – Jorge Martin finished third meanwhile, Johann Zarco finished in fourteenth place.
Today the twelfth chapter of the MotoGP Championship began at the Silverstone Circuit, in which the rookie Jorge Martin finished third.
Meanwhile, Johann Zarco finished in fourteenth place. FP1 concluded with the Pramac Racing riders Johann Zarco and Jorge Martin in ninth and thirteenth, respectively. In FP2, after a harmless crash, the Martinator lowered his lap times by more than 2 seconds, marking his best lap at a time of 1:59.939 and therefore securing third place. Johann struggled to find the right confidence with the rear, and a badly strategized move during FP2 has cost him a place in the current hypothetical Q2. He finished in fourteenth place, with a time of 2:00.810.
I feel great on the bike. Since this morning, we have taken a big step forward. I lose time at turns 9 and 10, but tomorrow we will work hard to improve in this sector.
I am struggling a lot with the rear; this does not allow me to express myself at my best. Together with the team, we will continue trying to resolve this situation and set a good lap-time tomorrow in FP3.
More, from a press release issued by Aprilia Gresini Racing:
ALEIX STARTS OFF STRONG AT SILVERSTONE, DIFFICULT AND PAINFUL DAY FOR LORENZO SAVADORI
It was an extremely positive day in Silverstone for Aprilia, thanks to a fast and incisive Aleix Espargaró on his RS-GP. Despite the low temperatures (but the forecast is calling for an improvement), the times were interesting, with Aleix second in the FP1 session and in the lead for much of FP2. He was limited only by the traffic he ran into on his final attempt, which kept him from improving on his seventh place in the combined standings.
The situation on the other side of the garage was more complicated. Lorenzo Savadori is still in pain, especially in controlling the bike’s movements and in tackling right-handers. After a cautious first session, Lorenzo took on FP2, but he stopped before the end of the session. He’ll try to recover now and the situation will be reassessed tomorrow morning.
“I’m satisfied. The RS-GP is working well overall. I managed to be fast and consistent, especially in race configuration, whereas with the soft tyre, partly due to some problems with traffic, I was unable to improve as much as I would have expected. I know it’s only Friday, but here in Silverstone with the unpredictable weather, it’s important to be fast in every session. We’ll have to work on this and try to find a little something more with the soft tyre so we aren’t penalised too much by our starting position.”
“To be honest, I expected things to go better, but the fact is that you can never really know what the situation is until you get on a MotoGP bike. The track doesn’t help either. It is a very physical circuit and right now I’m unable to push and ride the way I’d like to. We tried not to turn too many laps today in order to keep the situation from getting worse. We’re working on all fronts, from pain killers to my position in the saddle to my boots. We’ll see how the situation is tomorrow and evaluate how to proceed from there.”
More, from a press release issued by Ducati:
Positive start for the Ducati Lenovo Team riders at Silverstone: Miller finishes second while Bagnaia is sixth after the first two free practice sessions of the British Grand Prix
At the historic Silverstone Circuit, where the twelfth round of the 2021 MotoGP season, the British GP, takes place this weekend, the Ducati Lenovo Team riders completed the first day of free practices on a positive note. Thanks to the favourable track conditions, which remained dry throughout the day despite overcast skies, both Jack Miller and Pecco Bagnaia were able to work consistently on their Desmosedici GP machines, managing to be fast at the end of the two sessions held today.
Fifth, after this morning’s FP1, Miller was able to improve on his best time in FP2 by over a second and a half, taking second place 512 thousandths off the top of the timesheets with a time of 1:59.829. Bagnaia, eighth this morning after the first session, was also able to improve further in the afternoon. Thanks to a lap in 2:00.102, the Italian rider closed Friday in sixth place, 273 thousandths behind his teammate.
Jack Miller (#43 Ducati Lenovo Team) – 2nd (1:59.829)
“I’m thrilled to be back at Silverstone! It’s an old-style track with lots of corners, where it’s always great fun to race. Compared to 2019, the last year the GP was held here, the asphalt conditions have improved significantly, which is also positive in terms of tyre wear. Compared to two years ago, my feeling with the bike has improved a lot, and this also shows how the Desmosedici GP has made huge steps forward in recent years! We have a really great bike this year, shown by the fact that we are always competitive on every track. Now we will continue to work hard to try to improve again tomorrow. There were already a lot of fans in the stands today, and I hope we can give them a great show this Sunday!”
Francesco Bagnaia (#63 Ducati Lenovo Team) – 6th (2:00.102)
“I’m pleased with the work we’ve done on this first day. In FP1, I struggled a little bit with the lack of grip, but in the afternoon, we improved a lot and took a big step forward with the bike. It was very cold this afternoon, which made it difficult to make a time attack, so I preferred not to take too many risks. Anyway, we are sixth, and this is a sign that we are doing a great job. Quartararo and Márquez were fast today, but I’m not worried: I’m sure that tomorrow we’ll be able to take another big step forward”.
The Ducati Lenovo Team riders will be back on track tomorrow at 9:55 am local time (10:55 am in Italy) for FP3, while qualifying for the British GP will take place from 2:10 pm (3:10 pm in Italy) at the end of FP4.
More, from a press release issued by Monster Energy Yamaha:
MONSTER ENERGY YAMAHA MOTOGP SHOW RESILIENCE IN CHILLY FRIDAY FP SESSIONS AT SILVERSTONE
Silverstone (UK), 27th August 2021
GRAND PRIX OF GREAT BRITAIN
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP’s Fabio Quartararo made a strong start to this weekend’s Monster Energy British Grand Prix. He wrapped up Day 1 as the fastest rider, 0.512s faster than the rival in second place. Cal Crutchlow used the available track time to get used to the Factory Yamaha bike at the Silverstone Circuit. His fastest time of the day took him up to 16th place in the combined free practice results.
1st FABIO QUARTARARO 1’59.317 (FP2) / 18 + 12 LAPS
16th CAL CRUTCHLOW 2’00.882 (FP2) / 17 + 16 LAPS
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP’s Fabio Quartararo was in a league of his own today at the Silverstone track. Even a nasty low-speed crash in FP2 couldn‘t stop the championship leader from taking first place in the combined FP standings with more than a 0.5s lead over the rest of the field. Cal Crutchlow also showed good pace in the first practice sessions in tricky conditions that caught out many riders. The local hero, however, brought his vast MotoGP and Silverstone experience to bear and finished 16th in the combined standings.
Quartararo had been looking forward to riding at Silverstone, a circuit he loves. He hopped on his YZR-M1 in FP1 and was soon positioned at the top of the timesheets. The pace picked up, but the Yamaha rider responded by setting two successive fastest laps. He dug even deeper a few laps later and posted a 2‘01.301s on lap 10/18. This ultimately earned him third place, 0.360s from first.
The Frenchman was keen to continue work in FP2, but an early crash in Turn 8 lost him some time. Though not very seriously injured, Quartararo did hurt his left foot. However, you wouldn‘t have thought so seeing him out on track on his next run. As if made out of steel, he managed to set a 2’00.138s for first place just a short while later, putting him 0.329s clear of the rest of the field with more than 15 minutes remaining. The youngster improved his best lap two more times and secured first place with a 1‘59.317s, 0.512s faster than his closest rival.
The cold morning temperatures (14°C) and tarmac (19°C) also didn‘t bother new Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP rider Crutchlow. The local MotoGP hero used the 45 minutes of FP1 to get used to the Factory Yamaha bike and gradually upped his pace. Knowing Silverstone like the back of his hand, he steadily climbed up the rankings and at the end of the session dipped under the 2‘02s-mark. His 2‘01.966s best time, set on lap 15/17, earned him 12th place, 1.025s from first.
The Briton followed the same strategy in the afternoon. He used most of the available track time to work on race pace and the final third of the session to push. The number-35 rider had just moved up to 17th place before the usual mini time attacks started. He also returned to the pits to switch to medium-soft tyres. Crutchlow improved his time to a 2‘00.882s on his last lap, which secured him 16th position in the FP2 and combined free practice results, 1.565 s from the top.
We are quite satisfied with how things have started this weekend, apart from Fabio’s crash. We know the YZR-M1 suits this track quite well usually, but the cooler temperatures and poor grip levels here did make it very tricky today, and the bumps on the track are also something to look out for. That said, both Fabio and Cal really enjoy this circuit, and you can tell by the results. Fabio was in a league of his own today, even despite that nasty fall in Turn 8. Instead of slowing him down, it spurred him on. To get back on the bike and set multiple fastest laps of the session shows just how strong he is mentally. We are also pleased to see Cal‘s progress. His main goal for today was to get used to the Factory bike again, and every run we saw him chipping away at his time, which is very promising. We think we can make him feel even more comfortable on the bike tomorrow, and that should also help him go faster. Overall, the team had a good first day. We want to keep this up. The forecasts predict warmer weather for the remainder of the weekend, and that should be good for the race.
Everything is okay. My left foot is a little bit sore, but it’s nothing too serious. I’ve been to the medical centre and went back on the bike, and it was okay. On the bike it’s not an issue, just when I’m walking I have quite a lot of pain. But, honestly, the most important thing is that on the bike I have no pain. I knew I was going to be fast with the soft tyre. I wasn’t pushing to the limit on the medium tyre. I was doing my own pace, and I was quite impressed by my lap times. In that moment I knew that with the softs I could be much faster. I knew I was going to be fighting for the top-3 positions, but I never expected to be first by half a second. I need to go back to the Clinica Mobile later. I kind of twisted my ankle, so they will put some ice on it and tape it to strengthen it. It should be fine tomorrow.
It was a day of learning again. In Austria I got used to the feeling of the 2019 bike. I hadn’t ridden the 2021 bike since the start of April. The feeling was a little bit different, and the position on the bike was a bit different. The mechanics worked very well to give me a better feeling with the bike in that area. Overall, it was not a bad day. I felt okay and comfortable enough. I wanted to be a bit faster than I was, but this is the situation at the moment. I felt we did a good job. We made some good changes. Tomorrow we expect more. We will make more changes, and we expect to have the bike similar to how I had it at the test, which is a bit different and more experimental than those of the other guys. Overall, the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team worked great today, and we look forward to tomorrow.
More, from a press release issued by Repsol Honda:
On form Friday for the Repsol Honda Team in Silverstone
Pol Espargaro and Marc Marquez started the British Grand Prix weekend on the pace and comfortably inside the top five, Marquez recovering well from a red flag inducing fall despite eye troubles.
Clouds loomed overhead as the MotoGP paddock returned to Silverstone for the first time since 2019, fans already filling the stands around the 5.8-kilometer-long circuit. Cooler conditions didn’t slow down the on-track action as riders soon began to dip into the 1’59s and began to work towards Marc Marquez’s 1’58.168 lap record from 2019.
Friday was a confidence building day for Pol Espargaro after recent struggles, the Repsol Honda Team rider improving his riding and bike setup with each stint on track. Ending Free Practice 1 in fourth place, Espargaro was rarely more than half a second behind his teammate on the timing sheets. During Free Practice 2, Espargaro would improve his time further to end Friday as the fastest Honda rider in fourth overall with a 2’00.035. Although seven tenths behind first placed Quartararo, Espargaro was just 0.2s back from Miller in second place.
Marc Marquez started the day in fine form, consistently lapping as the quickest rider on track during Free Practice 1 for the British Grand Prix. Steadily working down towards two minutes, Marquez was looking comfortable and fast on the RC213V. Unfortunately, with just a few minutes left of the first practice, a crash at 270km/h through the Maggots and Becketts section ended the session early for the eight-time World Champion. In true Marquez style, the #93 was back out in Free Practice 2 that afternoon and improved his time to a 2’00.051 for fifth overall, 0.016s shy of his teammate despite experiencing discomfort with his eye.
With a strong and confidence building day under their belts, both Repsol Honda Team riders are eager to return to the Silverstone circuit and continue improving. Free Practice 3 at 09:55 Local Time is the first challenge of Saturday, the pair aiming to keep their top ten positions for direct Q2 access.
“It was a good day, but not our best day so far. Everything was going quite well today, this is true. With the medium tyres we couldn’t push too much because it has still been quite cold but we found a good direction with the soft in these conditions. There are no complaints today and right now I am feeling good with the bike, the track, the temperature, and everything is coming smoothly to us. It’s all working well but today doesn’t matter in FP3 and it does not matter on Sunday, so we need to keep working to improve. It’s not the time to get excited, it’s the time to work.”
“Today I was feeling really good from the start, I went out and I was riding like I wanted to. Unfortunately, at the end of FP1 we had a big crash and I got some dirt inside my eye which caused some crying during FP2 and it was difficult to concentrate well and perform at my best. Even in this situation we were able to perform well but after FP2 the eye felt worse, my vision has always been ok, but I went to the hospital to get it properly cleaned. Now I will take some rest, keep the eye closed and be ready for tomorrow. The aim is to keep this level until Sunday.”
More, from a press release issued by LCR Honda Idemitsu:
NAKAGAMI MAKES ENCOURAGING START TO SILVERSTONE RACE
Takaaki Nakagami made a solid start to the British Grand Prix on Friday, ending the first practice session in sixth position, before slipping back to 15th on combined times after missing out on an outright fast lap in afternoon practice. The LCR Honda IDEMITSU man looked in decent form around one of his favoured MotoGP venues, scene of his Moto2 win in 2017, but still feels there is good room for improvement in Saturday’s practice sessions.
The Japanese rider was regularly among the top spots in the morning practice, despite the cool conditions around the Silverstone venue. In FP2 he was challenged by some rear grip issues, but still improved his lap time by six-tenths of a second. With an evening’s data analysis with his LCR Honda IDEMITSU crew, Taka hopes to make it through to the qualifying final on Saturday and set himself up with a good grid spot for Sunday’s race.
Takaaki Nakagami – 15th
“This morning it was quite good, and we found good performance and ended up the session in P6. In FP2 we had a tough session and found a lack of rear grip throughout the 45 minutes, and couldn’t make a good lap time at the end – so we dropped down to P15.
We have a lot of work to do for tomorrow and we need to improve in several areas. We’ll check the data and hopefully we can improve the feeling on the bike for tomorrow.”
More, from a press release issued by LCR Honda Castrol:
ÁLEX MÁRQUEZ REMAINS POSITIVE AFTER CHALLENGING FIRST DAY AT SILVERSTONE
LCR Honda CASTROL rider Álex Márquez received a harsh welcome to the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in Friday’s first free practice sessions, the first time the Spanish rider has ridden on the track in the premier class of MotoGP. The two-time world champion had falls in each of the first two outings, with the whole field tested by cooler track conditions than expected.
Nevertheless, the 25 year-old still remains upbeat about his chances of making forward steps throughout the rest of this weekend, when conditions are expected to improve. Álex and his crew have seen enough signs that an improvement is just around the corner in Saturday’s practice sessions and remain confident that with a night of data analysis they will find their way into the top spots.
Álex Márquez – 20th
“The first day in Silverstone was a little bit complicated with the crashes. With a spill in the morning and another in the afternoon session, it didn’t help us show the potential we had today, which actually in the morning was quite good.
Apart from that I think we need to take the positives out of this first day, we can be positive going into tomorrow because we’ve seen lots of good things. It’s true that we are far from the top guys, but here the differences are always bigger. We need to keep going like that and keep improving and I am looking forward to making a step forward tomorrow and forgetting about this first day.”
More, from a press release issued by Team Suzuki ECSTAR:
BUILDING THE FEELING ON DAY 1 AT THE BRITISH GP
Alex Rins: 9th – 02:00.392 – +1.075
Joan Mir: 13th – 02:00.725 – +1.408
Team Suzuki Ecstar’s riders Alex Rins and Joan Mir took to the track at Silverstone on Friday, with Mir experiencing it on a MotoGP™ bike for the first time after missing out due to injury two years ago. For Rins it’s a return to the place where he took a fantastic victory last time the championship raced here in 2019.
FP1 kicked off proceedings under cloudy skies with a chill in the air, making it tricky to get the feeling with the bike and tyres. Both Team Suzuki Ecstar riders took a steady approach, building up their confidence and working to bring down their lap times. The session was disrupted in the closing moments due to poor track conditions following a crash. Rins finished FP1 in seventh, and Mir in 15th.
Things warmed up in time for FP2, and with low temperatures predicted in the morning, it was an important session with qualifying in mind. Rins and Mir continued to drop some tenths from their lap times, improving and feeling better on the warmer tarmac. The pair went for three fast laps at the end of the session and despite both entering the Top 10, most of the field also pushed and improved; this meant they closed with Rins in ninth and Mir in 13th.
“It’s been a cold day here in Silverstone, but despite this my feeling wasn’t actually bad and I have good consistent pace. I was pretty fast with used tyres, but then when I put the soft tyre in I didn’t manage to improve as much as I wanted because the feeling wasn’t so good. The main thing I need to work on now is setting a fast lap, and that will be the aim for tomorrow. At the moment I’m in the Top 10, and hopefully it will stay like that so I can go directly into Q2 tomorrow.”
“I really enjoyed riding this amazing track for the first time with the GSX-RR, but I had some trouble – in FP1 something was not feeling right with the front tyre that we used and I lost a lot of confidence, and then in FP2 it was much better but I needed more laps. We spent quite a lot of that second session understanding and building on the speed, but in the end there was just not enough time to make up for the struggles in FP1. We need to adjust a few things, which is usual when you come somewhere for the first time. The main thing is that we still had some improvement, but today I wasn’t competitive and tomorrow I want to be.”
Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager:
“For our first day on track here, it hasn’t been too bad but also not too good. This track should be a good one for us, but it’s not easy and for Joan it’s the first time riding here with the GSX-RR. The riders improved their times today but we need to keep improving and we will work hard tomorrow to try and make sure that we can go much faster.”
More, from a press release issued by PETRONAS Yamaha SRT:
Strong start to first BritishGP in two years for Rossi
Free Practice at fan-packed Silverstone ends with Valentino Rossi tenth and Jake Dixon 21st on his MotoGP debut
For the first time since 2019 MotoGP action returned to Silverstone today, where PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team’s Valentino Rossi ended the day tenth, while Jake Dixon, making his MotoGP debut at the BritishGP as stand-in for Franco Morbidelli, was 21st.
The start of FP1 saw Rossi post a 2mins 2.334secs time, which put him third momentarily and saw him stay inside the top-ten for a while. A red flag at the end of the session meant that he was not able to improve upon this and he ended FP1 16th. The afternoon’s FP2 session got off to a steadier start for the Italian, but a series of strong laps towards the end of the 45 minutes saw him sit as high as seventh. With a fastest lap of 2mins 0.400secs Valentino ended the day tenth.
Dixon made consistent progress throughout FP1, his first session aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1, and steadily improved his times. Using the 45 minutes to adjust to the premier class machine, he ended FP1 21st – 2mins 3.939secs. The Brit continued to make further improvements in front of his home fans in FP2: increasing his experience and bettering his morning time by 1.3secs. At the end of the BritishGP opening day Jake was 21st with a 2mins 2.601secs lap time.
Rossi and Dixon will be back out on track tomorrow at 9.55am local time (4.55pm MYT) for FP3, ahead of the two MotoGP Qualifying sessions that get underway at 2.10pm local time (9.10pm MYT).
Today was a good day for me, especially to be within the top-ten at the end of the day. This was important to do. Although if tomorrow morning is dry, then that will be the practice that decides the Q2 places. I have a good feeling with the bike, although I was not able to give my maximum in FP1 because of the red flag, but my pace was not so bad. In the afternoon I tried the hard tyre, but it was not the best in those conditions. At the end of the session, with the soft tyre, I did a good lap though. It’s always a great pleasure to ride at Silverstone because it is a fast, technical circuit with a lot of corners. The new asphalt also provides a lot of grip and they have done a very good job with the layout.
It’s been an incredible day and experience, especially in FP1 because there was a lot to take in and a lot of things going on. I was so slow on the first lap because of this. All my timings for braking and accelerating were out because it’s just so different on the MotoGP bike. The afternoon was a lot more enjoyable because I was able to enjoy the speed of the bike and I was more in control of everything. So many things impressed me, like the speed and how much lean angle you can get because of the grip the tyres give. The team has been incredible, it was a really special day for me and I can’t wait for tomorrow. I want to keep improving every session, which I did this afternoon by 1.3 seconds on the same tyre, so if we keep doing this we’re good.