stefan bradl MotoGP 2013 Sachsenring Free practise report

LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl delighted his legion of German fans at Sachsenring by topping Friday practice with a benchmark lap time of 1’22.030 in this afternoon’s Free Practice 2 session. Bradl set the best time of the day on the combination of the softer rear and harder front slick to narrowly beat Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo’s — who set his best time in the morning FP1 session – by 0.017 seconds. Jorge Lorenzo will not continue to participate in this weekend’s Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland following a high speed crash this afternoon in the second of the day’s free practice sessions. Reigning World Champion Lorenzo had been the fastest rider of the morning session, despite still recovering from surgery just two weeks ago on a collarbone injury sustained in practice for the Assen TT. Third quickest today was Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who stopped the clocks with a 1’22.221 to finish within two-tenths of Bradl. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro again set the pace among the CRT pack, finishing eighth overall with a time of 1’22.641.

Ambient temperatures varied greatly today as cloud cover in the morning kept track temperatures low in FP1 before the sun emerged for FP2 to boost track temperatures to a peak of 41°C. The cool temperatures in the morning resulted in all riders using the softer rear slick options and only two riders evaluating the harder front slick option. As track temperatures increased for FP2, riders were able to evaluate both the harder front and rear slick options, although no clear picture on tyre choice for the race has emerged at this stage.

Dani Pedrosa

“Today we focused on tyres, in order to find out what the ideal choice will be for Sunday’s race and lately we have had some problems with the compounds being a little harder than normal. I had time to test all the options and in general things went well. However, tomorrow we have to find a slightly better setup for cornering. As for Jorge, let’s see how his condition is before commenting —we still don’t know details. At the moment it doesn’t look good for him, so I wish him well.”

Marc Marquez

“The day has been very positive and I’m very happy with how practice has gone so far, as I have been slowly improving. From the start I felt very comfortable —with it being a smaller circuit, the speed isn’t so different compared to when you’re riding a Moto2 bike. Of course, you reach your braking markers quicker and you have to use new references, but it isn’t that different to other circuits. This helps me to adapt a little more quickly. We have been working hard, but there are still some places on the track where I have to improve, be more consistent and find a good setup. Tomorrow we will try to continue in the same way, just as focused. I am sorry to see Jorge suffer another big crash, we wait to hear news and I send him my best wishes.”

Jorge Lorenzo

“I have decided to go home and recover after today’s crash at Sachsenring. I prefer to focus on surgery to fix the plate that was unfortunately bent during the crash. I will try to recover and be back as soon as possible.”

Valentino Rossi

“At the end it’s a positive day for us, the practices were not so bad. Our pace and lap time was good and we are not so far from the front. This afternoon we had some difficulties when we tried some different things on the bike, the harder front tyre and some different settings. It looks like when the track has more temperature it gives us more problems, especially after some laps, so to ride the bike at the limit is more difficult. We have to work on the setting to improve our pace to stay with the front. Anyway we are not so far. Five or six riders have good pace so it will be interesting tomorrow.”

Alvaro Bautista

“We had a few problems with the rear of the bike today because we were struggling for grip throughout the morning session and then didn’t make the progress that we hoped for in the afternoon despite trying two different solutions. We have a lot of work to do tomorrow, when we will be trying to make up for the time and positions we lost today.”

Bryan Staring

“I like the circuit and despite everything I have to say that I think I adapted quite quickly to it. Unfortunately we had a crash this afternoon and it was a shame because I think otherwise we could have made some more improvements before the end of the day. We’ll try to make up for it tomorrow and hopefully improve the feeling with the bike even more.”

Andrea Iannone

“This morning was quite difficult, as I fell when I didn’t expect it. It’s not an easy circuit with the tyres, as there are many consecutive left-hand corners and then a very fast right, after the right side of the tyre has cooled. Anyway, I tried to stay calm and confident this afternoon; I started to push pretty early, and I saw some results. I’m pleased because I immediately felt the changes we made to the bike today, which is quite positive. Now we’ll see what else we can do for tomorrow, but it will certainly be important to be able to repeat the time I did today and then improve upon it. A big thank-you to the team for the great work they did to get the bike ready for the second free practice.”

Michele Pirro

The bike this afternoon was not bad, I had a good feeling, and I immediately saw a few improvements in my time compared to this morning. I started with used tyres, and, seven minutes before the end of the session we put in the new ones. I returned to the track but on my first lap I crashed at the second left-hand turn without being able to take advantage of the new rubber, and I’m really disappointed about that. It seems in any case that we are all more or less aligned on times. However, compared to the morning session, we made a big improvement and we hope to do even better tomorrow.”

Bradley Smith

“It was a positive day. The Sachsenring is a very physical track, especially for the left side of the body, but it is not giving me too much of a problem. That is great because it proves all the hard work with my physiotherapist back in the UK has paid off with my wrist. It is not at 100% but it is much better than in Assen and I can ride with less discomfort and pain. I’m a bit disappointed not to be inside the top 10 but I felt I didn’t quite put the best lap together today, so I am sure we can improve for tomorrow. We have a clear direction to improve the setting I have no doubt my Monster Yamaha Tech 3 crew will improve our package for tomorrow. I am feeling confident and excited to improve tomorrow.”

MotoGP Sachsenring Combined Free Practice Times

  • 1. Stefan Bradl (GER) LCR Honda MotoGP- 1’22.030
  • 2. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Yamaha Factory Racing- 1’22.047
  • 3. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team- 1’22.221
  • 4. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha Factory Racing- 1’22.241
  • 5. Marc Marquez (SPA) Repsol Honda Team- 1’22.251
  • 6. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3- 1’22.469
  • 7. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Team- 1’22.572
  • 8. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Power Electronics Aspar- 1’22.641
  • 9. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Ducati Team- 1’22.850
  • 10. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Go&Fun Honda Gresini- 1’22.882
  • 11. Andrea Iannone (ITA) Pramac Racing Team- 1’23.008
  • 12. Bradley Smith (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3- 1’23.040
  • 13. Randy De Puniet (FRA) Power Electronics Aspar- 1’23.131
  • 14. Michele Pirro (ITA) Ignite Pramac Racing- 1’23.491
  • 15. Yonny Hernandez (COL) Paul Bird Motorsport- 1’23.524
  • 16. Hector Barbera (SPA) Avintia Blusens- 1’23.627
  • 17. Michael Laverty (GBR) Paul Bird Motorsport- 1’23.636
  • 18. Danilo Petrucci (ITA) Came Iodaracing Project- 1’23.866
  • 19. Colin Edwards (USA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing- 1’23.911
  • 20. Claudio Corti (ITA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing- 1’24.078
  • 21. Hiroshi Aoyama (JPN) Avintia Blusens- 1’24.647
  • 22. Bryan Staring (AUS) Go&Fun Honda Gresini- 1’24.798
  • 23. Lukas Pesek (CZE) Came IodaRacing Project- 1’25.568
  • 24. Karel Abraham (CZE) Cardion AB Motoracing- 1’26.195