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Old 10-16-2015, 03:20 PM   #1
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Marc Marquez Off To A Fast Start At Phillip Island

Marc Marquez fastest in the afternoon to lead the way on day one at Phillip Island. Photo Courtesy of MotoGP

Marc Marquez kicked off the Australian Grand Prix weekend as top of the MotoGP class. It was typical Phillip Island, with mixed weather conditions, but the Repsol Honda man made the most of the sunnier afternoon session to top the morning’s fast man – Movistar Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo – by .05 of a second.

“Once again, Jorge [Lorenzo] is very fast, but we are working well,” Marquez said. “We have good pace and were able to set a good lap."

The top complaint of most of the riders was grip, but Marquez felt they that had a good setup so far.

“The grip of the track is not the best one it’s sliding a lot the rear tire,” he said. “But we are working on the grip, we are working also on the set up of the bike and at the moment we have a good base.”

Although Jorge Lorenzo is less than pleased with second, he's confident that he has the pace and the setup. Photo Courtesy of Movistar Yamaha

Although Marquez’ 1:29.383 led the way, it was still a ways off of the pole record (1:27.899) set by Lorenzo last year. Lorenzo thinks that that time can’t be matched.

“The conditions today have been a little bit cold,” Lorenzo said. “Also the tarmac is a little bit worse, especially from two years ago. It’s difficult to arrive in the lap time from last year.”

For Lorenzo, a lot is on the line at Phillip Island. He trails teammate Valentino Rossi by 18 points and time is running out with just three races left of the season. So while he was unhappy with second, Lorenzo is confident with his pace.

“In general I think we arrive here with a good setup,” he said. “We have a good pace with old tires and we are fast also with new ones.”

Don't let ninth fool you, Valentino Rossi is doing work. Photo Courtesy of Movistar Yamaha

As for Rossi, he got to his typical slow start – ninth place. But the nine-time World Champion chose to focus on his pace with a used tire (the only rider not to switch to a fresh tire for the hot lap).

“My pace this afternoon was quite good,” Rossi said. “Also with the used tire, I was able to do some good lap times. I was not strong enough in the hot lap with the new tires, but at the same time we tried the asymmetric that everybody are very curious and the first feeling was not so bad. We have to work a little bit on the bike, but is okay. We wait for the good condition tomorrow and try to work to improve some places and try to be stronger.”

Maverick Vinales also got off to a good start at the island. Photo Courtesy of MotoGP

Team Ecstar Suzuki’s Maverick Vinales used the strength of his Suzuki handling abilities to end the day third ahead of Ducati’s Andrea Iannone and LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow.

As the top 13 are within a second of the leader, tomorrow’s qualifying promises to be a wild one, especially when you throw in the island’s unpredictable weather.

2015 MotoGP Phillip Island Friday Combined Results:
1. Marc Marquez (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 1:29.383
2. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Movistar Yamaha 1:29.433
3. Maverick Vinales (SPA) Team Suzuki Ecstar 1:29.518
4. Andrea Iannone (ITA) Ducati Team 1:29.544
5. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) LCR Honda 1:29.579
6. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda 1:29.876
7. Danilo Petrucci (ITA) Octo Pramac Racing Ducati 1:30.021
8. Bradley Smith (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1:30.032
9. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Movistar Yamaha 1:30.041
10. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Team Suzuki Ecstar 1:30.113
11. Jack Miller (AUS) LCR Honda 1:30.127
12. Nicky Hayden (USA) Aspar Honda 1:30.184
13. Hector Barbera (SPA) Avintia Racing Ducati 1:30.278
14. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Ducati Team 1:30.451
15. Pol Espargaro (SPA) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1:30.552
16. Yonny Hernandez (COL) Octo Pramac Racing Ducati 1:30.660
17. Scott Redding (GBR) EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda 1:30.773
18. Eugene Laverty (IRL) Aspar Honda 1:30.910
19. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1:31.260
20. Mike Di Meglio (FRA) Avintia Racing Ducati 1:31.339
21. Stefan Bradl (GER) Aprilia Racing Team Gresini 1:31.577
22. Toni Elias (SPA) Forward Racing Yamaha 1:32.122
23. Loris Baz (FRA) Forward Racing Yamaha 1:32.309
24. Anthony West (AUS) AB Motoracing Honda 1:32.592
25. Damo Cudlin (AUS) E-Motion IodaRacing Team 1:34.479

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