Friday weather masks Repsol Honda Team gains
Both Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro worked throughout the day to improve the feeling of their respective Hondas, tricky conditions hiding their progress.
Conditions were undoubtably wet as the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix began on Friday, rain steadily getting heavier throughout Free Practice 1. Both Repsol Honda Team riders got straight to work in the wet conditions as the forecast remains mixed for the remainder of the weekend. Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro were able to improve their times over the course of the session, going faster even as more rain fell.
Ending Free Practice 1 in second place, Marquez was able to again show the speed he’s had in the wet all year. Conditions would slowly but steadily improve as the day went on, the sun even making a brief appearance during Free Practice 2 but the circuit remaining wet. Improving his time by 0.9s, Marquez finished the second Friday session in 14th and 14th overall. The eight-time World Champion is confident that today did not show his full potential in the wet and is ready to work tomorrow to improve no matter what the weather decides to do.
Espargaro’s 1’45.204 from Free Practice 1 saw him end the morning in 15th, 1.4 seconds behind his teammate. A quick fall at Turn 13 saw Espargaro walk away unharmed, the #44 quickly returning to the Repsol Honda Team garage and heading out on his second RC213V. Even with the crash, the afternoon session saw massive gains for Espargaro who improved his best lap by over 1.5 second and more than halved the distance to Marquez. Still there is more to come from Espargaro who is eager to show his speed in Misano as he hunts more rear grip.
Action resumes at the Misano circuit on Saturday with Free Practice 3, a final chance to enter the combined top ten for a Q2 spot, starting at 09:55 Local Time. Forecasts are again calling for a high chance of rain, today’s lessons will need to be put into action once more.
“The day started quite well and in the morning we had good speed, in the afternoon the session was a bit more complicated. I wasn’t able to find the perfect lap in the afternoon but even so, it seems our level in the wet is not as high as it normally is. I don’t think our true position is 14th in the wet but we need to understand what is happening more. It was important to make the most of today because the forecast for tomorrow and also Sunday remains uncertain.”
“Today was a little bit more difficult than we expected, also for all the Honda riders, the bike was missing some grip but we were able to make some improvements. When I crashed I was probably feeling the best I felt all day, my time was improving so it’s a shame to fall but we learned some things with it. At the end, we need to look to tomorrow and see what we can do. If it’s dry we will see what we can achieve because we had a really good test here. If it’s still wet, it gives us a chance to improve our current feeling.”
Gran Premio dell'Emilia-Romagna Combined Free Practice Classification
Close to the city of Rimini, the Misano Adriático circuit was constructed in 1972 and has since undergone an array of modifications. A regular scene for Italian Grands Prix throughout the 80s and early 90s, Misano returned to the MotoGP calendar in 2007.With updated facilities, track and grandstands, the Misano… read more.
|Length||4.226 kilometres / 2.626 miles|
|Longest straight||0.565 kilometres / 0.351 miles|
Misano World Circuit "Marco Simoncelli", Via Daijiro Kato, Misano Adriatico, Rimini, Italy - View in Google Maps
|Pole Position||1m31.065s (167.0 km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2021)|
|Race Lap||1m31.868s (165.6km/h) Enea Bastianini (Ducati, 2022)|
|Race Time||41m43.199s (164.0 km/h) Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2022)|
|2022 Race Winner||Francesco Bagnaia (Ducati, 2022)|