2013 Mugello MotoGP Friday Practice ResultsWhen the first MotoGP practice session began at Mugello for the Grand Prix of Italy, the 3.259-circuit was slick due to rain showers.
But on wet Bridgestones, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez was quickly up to speed, the rookie leading the grid. But though quickest, the slippery conditions produced lap times that were eight seconds off the normal track times.This changed when the second free practice got underway, though. Under dry conditions, the reigning MotoGP Champion Jorge Lorenzo set the pace. The Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1 pilot posted a quickest lap of 1:48.375, followed by teammate Valentino Rossi, who was a mere 0.034 of a second back.The local favorite Rossi led most of the 45-minute session, and was the first rider to dip into 1:48. But Lorenzo put on the pressure during the final five minutes, eventually taking the top time. To put Lorenzo’s time into perspective, the fastest lap at Mugello ios a 1:47.284 set by Repsol Honda’s Dani edrosa last season.Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1 MotoGP) says: “In the morning it was wet and bad conditions so we preferred to not exit at the end of FP1 with the slick tires as we thought the track was dangerous. We had to wait for the afternoon and dry conditions. From the beginning the Yamaha riders were very strong and competitive which means the track is working well for us this year.“We have to wait for the improvement of our rivals and the possible change in weather that can change our performance but for the moment we are very competitive and happy.”Valentino Rossi (Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1 MotoGP) says: “I’m happy because it’s a very good practice today, starting from the beginning, staying at the top. It’s very good for the team as we are in first and second and for Yamaha because we have three Yamahas on the first three positions.“Already the lap time is not so bad but we have to stay focused and concentrate for tomorrow because for sure our opponents will improve a lot. We have to make another step to improve and go faster to fight for a good position in the race.”The only rider to come close to the factory Yamaha prototypes was yet another YZR-M1 – the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha ridden by Cal Crutchlow. The Brit followed 0.297 of a second back, and was the final rider to post within a second of Lorenzo.As for Marquez, he suffered a high-speed crash on one of the fastest parts of any racetrack in the world. The RC213V rider slid down the track towards turn one. The 20-year-old was taking to the circuit Medical Centre, where he was confirmed to have escaped serious injury.Repsol Honda reports Marquez sustained a strained neck and bruises to his right shoulder, arm and leg. The team did not rule him out, but his presence on the track will be contingent on how he feels Saturday morning.Also crashing was Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Bradley Smith, who sustained a left wrist scaphoid fracture and a wound to the 5th finger on his left hand. He has however been declared fit for tomorrow.Taking the fourth quickest time Friday was Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden. The American wasn’t completely happy with the GP13, but was able to finish just over a second behind Lorenzo.Fifth fastest was the championship leader Pedrosa. The Spaniard, who complained of lack of rear grip, was 1.002 of a second back. Sixth and seventh went to two Ducatis – Energy T.I. Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso.Dovi was involved in a crash in the FP1 session, and suffered with neck issues. The Italian stated that he cannot bend his head backwards, making it very tough on the straights, and even in the bends. He will assess his condition in the morning and will then decide if he is fit to ride.LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl will be looking for an improvement from eighth on his satellite Honda, while Power Electronics Aspar’s Randy de Puniet was the leading CRT runner in ninth, beating Ducati Test Team’s wildcard entry Michele Pirro riding the GP13 “lab bike.”Also, the American Ben Spies returned to action aboard the Pramac Racing Ducati GP13. The Texan, who is suffering from a nagging shoulder problem, was 16th quickest, 1:51 off the top pace.The 25-rider Mugello MotoGP grid will return to the Italian circuit Saturday for two more Free Practice sessions ahead of Qualifying. The third free practice will be important for all riders, considering the top 10 times from the first three free practice sessions automatically progress to the second qualifying.2013 Mugello MotoGP Free Practice Two Results:
This week, Senior Editor Nic de Sena rides the all new Ducati Monster. Big changes have been made by Ducati–has the company ruined the considerable heritage of the iconic Monster–or are the changes worth it? In the second part of the show, we chat with Nick Ienatsch, Founder and Head Instructor at the Yamaha Champions Riding School. He says: “We aim to change your riding life by introducing you to Champions Habits: The techniques, approaches, skills, and the mindsets of the best riders in the world. These Champions Habits are the foundation of safety and consistency to whatever speed you ride, in any venue on any bike. Street riders, this is just as much for you as track riders. The best way to make safe riders is to make good riders.“ We hope you enjoy this episode!