Moto GP

Maverick Vi̱ales tops times as sun returns to Phillip Island


With yesterday's rain having abated, the MotoGP World Championship was back in testing mode at Australia's Phillip Island with Maverick Vi̱ales coming out of the second day leading a tight tight top ten.

After an initially slow start the day proved to be a productive one with weather conditions allowing riders to run in the dry.

There was limited morning action with just the Ducati Team duo of Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone heading out on track alongside Jorge Lorenzo and Takuya Tsuda. Lorenzo spent the early stages on wet weather tyres while Iannone tested the new Michelin intermediate tyres as the track continued to dry out.

Fortunately for riders the track condition continued to improve and soon the majority of the field were out lapping on slick tyres. With the unique demands of Phillip Island, the left hand side of the tyre generating incredible heat in the final corners, Michelin had produced a new dual compound rear and were eager to assess its performance. As riders became more comfortable and conditions slowly improved, Valentino Rossi, Maverick Vi̱ales and Marc Marquez began to trade lap times at the top of the time sheets.
Marc Marquez was second fastest clocking 1m 29.292s +0.161s on his second last lap. Photo: Repsol Honda
There was a brief interruption to proceedings as a small rain shower appeared, but riders and teams were able to get back to work soon after. Improvements continued to come and Team Suzuki Ecstar‰Ûªs Maverick Vi̱ales became the first rider under the 1‰Ûª30 barrier as the second half of the day got underway. Clear conditions allowed all riders to work their own programme, most choosing to do runs of five laps before returning to the pits.

The afternoon saw all of the top ten riders inside the 1‰Ûª29 mark with Maverick Vi̱ales setting the fastest lap of the day, and of the test so far, with a 1‰Ûª29.131 as he continued to assert himself as one of the hottest young properties in MotoGP‰ã¢. 2015 saw the Team Suzuki Ecstar rider end the race a credible sixth, the young Spaniard able to set a 1‰Ûª29.131 on his 63rd lap on Thursday, half a second faster than his best lap from the race. Suzuki are continuing to work hard on development, test rider Tsuda running extensive assessments of the fully seamless gearbox in Phillip Island.

The final five minutes saw Vi̱ales and Marc Marquez swap fast laps, each taking a turn at leading before the flag came out. On his penultimate lap Marquez managed to set a 1‰Ûª29.292, 0.161s behind Vi̱ales with a total of 79 laps completed throughout the day. Both the Repsol Honda Team riders are continuing to assess two chassis variants, with the 2016 ‰Û÷evo‰Ûª engine, debuted at a private test in Jerez, fitted.

‰ÛÏToday I felt very good with my GSX-RR, confirming the positive feeling I had already yesterday even though it was in mixed conditions," Vi̱ales said.

"Today we worked well in two ways; the first is the fastest lap, which gave me the first place, and the second is the approach we had with the development, improving little-by-little but consistently in every run, applying little improvements to the machine without any major change.

"This consistency gave me not only the fastest lap but also a very comfortable feeling with the pace. Of course the track was a contribution, let‰Ûªs say. Here in Phillip Island I feel always confident, I like the track and I can express myself as I want, in any conditions. I‰Ûªm happy to see that the machine is supporting me in this enjoyment, allowing me to be so competitive,

"I‰Ûªm improving a lot in my capability to transfer my feelings to the team and they on their side are doing a great job supporting me and giving me good solutions for what I ask for. It‰Ûªs a learning process for all of us and today‰Ûªs result gives us an injection of enthusiasm," Vi̱ales concluded

Jorge Lorenzo made it a Spanish lockout in the top three with a 1‰Ûª29.357,
Jorge Lorenzo made it a Spanish lockout in the top three with a 1‰Ûª29.357, this came on the Movistar Yamaha rider‰Ûªs 65th lap out of 80, only Andrea Dovizioso and Tito Rabat completing more laps than the 2015 MotoGP‰ã¢ World Champion on Thursday. None of Lorenzo‰Ûªs runs were longer than six consecutive flying laps, the factory Yamaha rider yet to do a full race simulation but did complete ten laps in the 1‰Ûª29 range. Magneti Marelli are keen for riders to do a full race run, including sighting lap and race start from pit lane, to assess the new electronics over race distance. One of the biggest changes to the ECU in 2016 is a removal of adaptive strategies over race distance; now requiring more input from the rider themselves.

With Valentino Rossi in fourth, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP continued their great form from the Sepang test as the Italian was just 0.047 shy of Lorenzo‰Ûªs time and 0.273s down on Vi̱ales in first. Both Rossi and Lorenzo were within a quarter of a second of the fastest lap of the incredible 2015 Phillip Island race. Throughout the day Rossi was able to complete eleven laps in the 1‰Ûª29 range, with five in a row ending his second day of testing.

Cal Crutchlow put on a late charge to put himself and his LCR Honda machine in fifth. While both the factory Honda riders are testing the 2016 ‰Û÷evo‰Ûª engine, Crutchlow continued to work on the 2015 engine and the 2016 engine debuted at the post-season Valencia test.
I can be happy today," MIller said. The weather improved and we got a lot of laps in on the bike, which is good, and the leg was no problem: Jack Miller
In sixth, Hector Barbera continued to impress on the GP14.2 with a 1‰Ûª29.857. The Avintia Racing rider has only a single bike in Phillip Island and elected not to leave the pits on Wednesday during the wet weather. This put him as the top Ducati rider with Andrea Iannone ending the day seventh on the 2016 Ducati Desmosedici and 0.003s off Barbera‰Ûªs time. Although not testing, Casey Stoner was talking with many of the Ducati riders, including Iannone, about their feelings with the bike and the circuit.

With an hour and a half remaining there was another brief interruption as Dani Pedrosa fell from his Repsol Honda Team machine at Turn 4, brining out the red flag. The accident occurred soon after Pedrosa had improved to seventh with a 1‰Ûª29.917, the Spaniard unhurt in the fall and the halt to proceedings lasting less than ten minutes. Pedrosa would end the test in eighth 0.786s back on Vi̱ales‰Ûª best time.

Both Scott Redding and Bradley Smith put in a late run to break under the 1‰Ûª30 barrier and into the top ten. All of the top ten riders present were within a second of the top time, Phillip Island again producing tight times. Just outside the top ten and 1.003s off Vi̱ales‰Ûª best time was Loris Baz. The French rider is debuting a new seat unit at the Phillip Island to improve his position on the Ducati GP14.2 due to his height.

Having completed 88 laps, Andrea Dovizioso put in the most distance of any rider on track after a disappointing opening day. The factory Ducati Team rider was 12th fastest and three tenths back on his teammate in seventh. Behind the Ducati was Pol Espargaro in 13th.

Wednesday‰Ûªs leader, Danilo Petrucci, was down in 14th position but able to improve his time by over a second and a half in the better conditions. 1.254 seconds behind his teammate and session leader, Aleix Espargaro will no doubt be looking for improvements on the third and final day of the test in Australia. The Team Suzuki Ecstar rider completed just two laps on Wednesday after leaving the Sepang test somewhat frustrated.

A second red flag was brought out with ten minutes remaining, Yonny Hernandez falling at Turn 4 as Pedrosa did. The Colombian was uninjured and soon returned to the pits but was unable to return to track with limited time remaining.

Continuing his recovery from a broken right leg, local Jack Miller was 17th with a 1‰Ûª30.514 on the Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda ahead of Eugene Laverty who is also returning from injury. The Irish rider suffered a heavily bruised hand after a fast fall in Sepang.

‰ÛÏI can be happy today," MIller said. The weather improved and we got a lot of laps in on the bike, which is good, and the leg was no problem. The bike is working well, we‰Ûªre missing a little bit in turn 10, which we need to work on, but we have some ideas as to how we can improve tomorrow.

I‰Ûªm really happy with the direction that Michelin have taken with the tyres as they‰Ûªre working really well here at Phillip Island. I‰Ûªm looking forward to riding the bike again tomorrow and, hopefully, the weather will stay good for us," the Australian concluded.

In 19th, Tito Rabat completed a staggering 81 laps to end 1.519s back on former Moto2‰ã¢ rival Maverick Vi̱ales and almost two seconds clear of Suzuki test rider Tsuda.

The final day in Phillip Island gets underway at 09:45 Local Time on Friday morning.

Main Photo: Maverick Vinales on his way to the fastest time on day 2 of testing
Credit: Suzuki Racing

MotoGP Test Phillip Island Day 2
1. Maverick Vinales ESP Team Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR) 1m 29.131s (On Lap 63 of 64)
2. Marc Marquez ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 1m 29.292s +0.161s (On Lap78 of 79)
3. Jorge Lorenzo ESP Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 1m 29.357s +0.226s (On Lap65 of 80)
4. Valentino Rossi ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 1m 29.404s +0.273s (On Lap52 of 71)
5. Cal Crutchlow GBR LCR Honda (RC213V) 1m 29.671s +0.540s (On Lap57 of 61)
6. Hector Barbera ESP Avintia Racing (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1m 29.854s +0.723s (On Lap35 of 54)
7. Andrea Iannone ITA Ducati Team (Desmosedici GP15/16) 1m 29.857s +0.726s (On Lap69 of 76)
8. Dani Pedrosa ESP Repsol Honda Team (RC213V) 1m 29.917s +0.786s (On Lap38 of 55)
9. Scott Redding GBR Octo Pramac Yakhnich (Desmosedici GP15) 1m 29.941s +0.810s (On Lap59 of 60)
10. Bradley Smith GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1) 1m 29.992s +0.861s (On Lap75 of 75)
11. Loris Baz FRA Avintia Racing (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1m 30.134s +1.003s (On Lap53 of 54)
12. Andrea Dovizioso ITA Ducati Team (Desmosedici GP15/16) 1m 30.142s +1.011s (On Lap73 of 88)
13. Pol Espargaro ESP Monster Yamaha Tech 3 (YZR-M1) 1m 30.154s +1.023s (On Lap63 of 65)
14. Danilo Petrucci ITA Octo Pramac Yakhnich (Desmosedici GP15) 1m 30.156s +1.025s (On Lap61 of 63)
15. Aleix Espargaro ESP Team Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR) 1m 30.385s +1.254s (On Lap39 of 53)
16. Yonny Hernandez COL Aspar MotoGP Team (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1m 30.509s +1.378s (On Lap41 of 56)
17. Jack Miller AUS Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS (RC213V) 1m 30.514s +1.383s (On Lap57 of 58)
18. Eugene Laverty IRL Aspar MotoGP Team (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1m 30.617s +1.486s (On Lap46 of 52)
19. Tito Rabat ESP Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS (RC213V)* 1m 30.650s +1.519s (On Lap81 of 81)
20. Takuya Tsuda JPN Suzuki Test Rider (GSX-RR) 1m 32.599s +3.468s (On Lap45 of 48)

Share Article:


More News: Latest Headlines

More News: Latest Headlines


Team HRC Part Company With Roan van de Moosdijk

Off Road

Jess Gardiner and Danielle McDonald Trade Wins At Mt Misery


José Ignacio Cornejo Signs With Hero MotoSports Team Rally

AMA Supercross

Jett Lawrence And RJ Hampshire Back On Top At Nashville Supercross

Off Road

Wrap Up Of 2024 Australian Off-Road Championship Round Four

AMA Supercross

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Extends Aaron Plessinger Contract Into 2025 Season

Off Road

Wrapup From 2024 Australian Off-Road Championship Round Three

AMA Supercross

The Emergency Department - 2024 AMA Supercross - Seattle Rnd 10

AMA Supercross

Aaron Plessinger Forced To Sit Out Remainder Of The 2024 Supercross Season


Hamish Harwood Overcomes Hardship To Claim The 2024 New Zealand Motocross Championships


Jed Beaton Wins The Final Battle But Loses The War At NZ Motocross Championships

Dirt Track

Juniors Impress Again At The 2024 New South Wales Junior Dirt Track Championship

What's On This Week

Hoosier, Crawford, IN
Sunday, April 28th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 15
Lincoln Financial Field - Philadelphia, PA
Saturday, April 27th, 2024


Time to Pivot with Pivot Pegz?

First Look At The All New 2024 Beta 450RX

2024 Yamaha YZ250F Review

Enhance Your Bike’s Protection With Force Accessories Custom Clutch Cover

2023 Sherco 300 SE Factory Ride Review

Michelin StarCross 6 – Inspected

What's On This Week

Hoosier, Crawford, IN
Sunday, April 28th, 2024
AMA Supercross Round 15
Lincoln Financial Field - Philadelphia, PA
Saturday, April 27th, 2024