The MotoGP World Championship’s return to Malaysia saw a typical Sepang day with roaring temperatures in the morning and an intense afternoon shower, Marquez and Espargaro dodging puddles for third and 16th respectively.

Warm morning conditions would be replaced by a typical torrential downpour in the afternoon, the intensity of the rain causing a delay to Free Practice 2. Conditions would improve as the afternoon session went on, but no times would be improved and the results of the day were dictated by FP1. Forecasts are currently predicting rain around the time of the race on Saturday, so FP2 may yet prove to be a critical session.

Consistent top three speed from the first green flag had Marc Marquez feeling pleased as the Malaysian GP began. The three-time Malaysian GP winner did back-to-back tests of the new aero package debuted in Australia during Free Practice 1. With the afternoon session impacted by rain, Marquez’s 1’59.623 from the morning easily secured him a spot in the top ten. Third fastest overall, Marquez ends the day pleased with the work done and ready to continue on Saturday.

Pol Espargaro had another Friday of finding steady improvements. Ending the morning session with a best time of 2’01.200, the #44 was eager to continue working in the afternoon but the rain changed his plans. Focusing on getting the most out of his Honda RC213V in the wet, Espargaro completed several longer runs during the afternoon to gather data and see how the condition of the track improved. Currently outside the combined top ten, Espargaro is hoping for a dry Free Practice 3 session to make further improvements. Unfortunately, Espargaro received a three-place grid penalty of an incident early in FP1.

Marc Marquez

Third 1'59.623

“Today I was able to finish in the top three and a lot of this was because of the strategy we used. I used a soft tyre straight away in FP1 because I know that being in the top ten is really important here. But honestly, our feeling isn’t the best and there are still things to improve to make us more comfortable on track. We made a small step in FP2 with our second run so the aim is to keep going like this tomorrow. Happy to be in the top three, but there’s work to do.”

Pol Espargaro

16th 2'01.200

“We didn’t have a great day today. There was the penalty from Free Practice 1 which is a shame, I went to explain the situation to Race Direction but still we have it. It’s a shame because it adds an extra complication to the weekend. Anyway, we made some improvements in Free Practice 1 while a lot of people used the soft tyre. Then in the afternoon we learned as much as we could but towards the end of the session the track was very hot and there wasn’t much more to do. We go again tomorrow.”

MotoGP 2022
Practice Round 19   Malaysia

Malaysian Grand Prix Practice Results

Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Constructor Time/Gap
Location Information

Specifically built for speed and exciting racing, the Sepang International Circuit in Malaysia is one of the world’s best. The 2,300 acre complex cost around £50m to construct and was built in just 14 months, holding its first Grand Prix in April 1999 and setting the standard for race circuits… read more.

Length 5.543 kilometres / 3.444 miles
Width 25 metres
Left corners 5
Right corners 10
Longest straight 0.920 kilometres / 0.572 miles
Constructed 1998

Sepang International Circuit Klia Pahang Malaysia - View in Google Maps


Pole Position 1m 57.491s (169.8km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2023)
Race Lap 1m 58.979s (167.7km/h) Alex Marquez (Ducati, 2023)
2023 Race Winner Enea Bastianini (Ducati)
2023 Sprint Winner Alex Marquez (Ducati)