It was a familiar story at the head of the MotoGP™ test timesheet in Jerez on Monday as World Champion Marc Marquez set the fastest lap of the post-Grand Prix workout.
Repsol Honda’s MotoGP™ championship leader - who missed the last preseason tests due to injury - made up for lost time with a 1’38.737 best effort recorded on the 28th of 55 laps around the 4.4km Jerez circuit where he took his fourth win of 2014 on Sunday.
In the perfect morning conditions Marquez was amongst the first riders on track along with Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini) and Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing).
Marquez tried rear suspension tweaks to help with fast cornering and also worked on electronics and geometry settings. His teammate Dani Pedrosa was 0.64s behind him in fourth place overall having worked on front suspension to improve race performance in early laps.
Second on the timesheet was Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) a 0.262s margin from the top with a late fast lap having worked on electronics and bike balance – also testing a new swingarm.
In third place was Valentino Rossi (+0.326s) who has recently incorporated a new chassis into his evolving Yamaha YZR-M1 package. Fifth fastest was the aforementioned Bautista (+0.898s), the Spaniard completing a marathon haul of 73 laps as he worked on front forks and rear shocks.
LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl (+0.976s) ended up sixth having elected to test despite feeling arm pump symptoms over the weekend, putting in 70 laps working on suspension, geometry and electronics to improve corner entry. Bradl will visit a specialist in Germany on Tuesday with regard to the pain he is suffering in his arm.
The test top ten was rounded out by Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing), Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Hiroshi Aoyama (Drive M7 Aspar), all of them lapping just over a second off the pace of Marquez.
Ducati Team’s test work was handled by Michele Pirro in the absence of Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow, whilst Nicky Hayden (Drive M7 Aspar) was forced to miss the test due to a severely swollen wrist from Sunday’s race.
Colin Edwards (NGM Forward Racing) also missed the test, with his Moto2™ colleague Simone Corsi taking over his duties as the Italian gathered some MotoGP experience.
The test session was briefly red flagged due to a crash for Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) just after midday but soon resumed. Iannone was ok but did not test in the afternoon and ended up 11th overall. There was also a crash for Tech 3 rider Smith just after 1pm but the Englishman was able to continue with his work.