Lorenzo tops Sepang testing ahead of Rossi, Marquez

Friday, 5 February 2016 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo takes part in MotoGP testing at Malaysia’s Sepang International Circuit on 3 February, 2016 – AFP


AFP: Reigning world champion Jorge Lorenzo on a Yamaha on Wednesday (3 February) topped a rain affected final day of the 2016 official MotoGP test at Sepang circuit in Malaysia ahead of his teammate Valentino Rossi and rival Marc Marquez.

Spanish Lorenzo logged 1 min 59.580sec – 0.976 seconds ahead of Rossi who significantly improved his lap time and pace during the three-day testing.

Marquez, also from Spain and Honda’s double MotoGP world champion, who has been struggling with the machine over the past two days, was third – 1.303 seconds behind his fellow countryman Lorenzo.

A rain shower momentarily stopped testing in the afternoon.

British rider Cal Crutchlow on a Honda was fourth, with a time of 2 mins 00.992 seconds while retired Australian double world champion Casey Stoner, back on track testing for Ducati, was fifth fastest, 1.490 seconds behind the pacesetter.

Spaniard Dani Pedrosa, who had complained about problems with his Honda machine, managed to secure sixth with a time of 2 min 01.161 sec while Italian Danilo Petrucci on a Ducati was seventh, 1.637 seconds down on Lorenzo.

On Monday Lorenzo was the fastest, clocking 2 min 0.684 sec, just over one second faster than Rossi who has made clear his intentions to win his 10th World Championship title.

Petrucci topped the timesheets on day two while Frenchman Loris Baz’s dramatic accident Tuesday saw manufacturer Michelin withdrawing its soft tyre for the duration of the Sepang test.

Baz escaped serious injury when his rear tyre exploded and hurled him off his Ducati bike in a spectacular high-speed crash.

The Frenchman was travelling at around 290 kilometres per hour (180 mph) along the Sepang circuit’s main straightaway at the time.

From Malaysia, MotoGP riders will head to Australia for three days at Phillip Island from 17-19 February.

After the first two tests, the premier class will head to Qatar from the second to fourth of March for their final official test.

The MotoGP world championship begins in Losail, Qatar, on 17 March.