Marc Marquez set the pace in Austin as the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas got underway, consistently strong in the wet and dry.
The MotoGP World Championship’s return to the Circuit of the Americas started on a damp note as heavy rains soaked the Texas tarmac before Free Practice 1 on Friday.
Conditions would quickly improve with a dry line starting to emerge towards the end of the session and Free Practice 2 being run without issue as the hot Austin sun quickly dried the water. Even more than the weather, the bumps around the 5.5-kilometer-long track were a major area of contention and focus across the opening day of practice.
Marc Marquez was eager to stake his claim at COTA, topping Free Practice 1 in the wet with a 2m15.872s before going on to dominate the afternoon session. A 2m04.164s saw Marquez edge out the likes of Jack Miller and Fabio Quartararo who put in late flying laps, but neither was able to show the overall pace Marquez had during the session.
Despite his speed on the opening day, Marquez is still looking for further improvements ahead of Sunday’s race.
“It was a tricky day today, the track conditions weren’t easy today. With all of the bumps it’s very hard to be consistent with your laps and to understand where you can push and where the limit is. I feel good in the wet and dry today, and in the afternoon we were able to try some different options as well. We still have some areas to work on, to extract the maximum from the bike and myself here in Austin. It’s our best Friday so far this year, and the goal is to of course keep this up for the rest of the weekend.”
Friday Practice Times
|1||Marquez Marc||93||SPA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||2’04.164|
|2||Miller Jack||43||AUS||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||0.015|
|3||Quartararo Fabio||20||FRA||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||0.202|
|4||Espargaro Pol||44||SPA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||0.388|
|5||Nakagami Takaaki||30||JPN||LCR Honda||Honda||0.448|
|6||Bagnaia Francesco||63||ITA||Ducati Lenovo Team||Ducati||0.499|
|7||Martin Jorge||89||SPA||Pramac Racing||Ducati||0.513|
|8||Zarco Johann||5||FRA||Pramac Racing||Ducati||0.559|
|9||Rins Alex||42||SPA||Team Suzuki Ecstar||Suzuki||0.638|
|10||Bastianini Enea||23||ITA||Avintia Esponsorama||Ducati||0.672|
|11||Binder Brad||33||RSA||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||0.688|
|12||Marini Luca||10||ITA||SKY VR46 Avintia||Ducati||0.769|
|13||Mir Joan||36||SPA||Team Suzuki Ecstar||Suzuki||0.930|
|14||Dovizioso Andrea||4||ITA||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||0.973|
|15||Morbidelli Franco||21||ITA||Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP||Yamaha||1.132|
|16||Marquez Alex||73||SPA||LCR Honda||Honda||1.450|
|17||Rossi Valentino||46||ITA||Petronas Yamaha SRT||Yamaha||1.467|
|18||Oliveira Miguel||88||POR||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||KTM||1.518|
|19||Espargaro Aleix||41||SPA||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||Aprilia||2.045|
|20||Petrucci Danilo||9||ITA||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||2.071|
|21||Lecuona Iker||27||SPA||Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing||KTM||2.093|