Pedrosa Quick On Day One In Malaysia

Dani Pedrosa claimed the MotoGP pole at Circuit de Catalunya Saturday. (MotoGP photo)
Dani Pedrosa during testing Tuesday at Sepang Int’l Circuit. (MotoGP photo)

SEPANG, Malaysia — Dani Pedrosa remained on top as MotoGP pre-season testing continued in Malaysia on Tuesday.

Having led all three days of the previous test three weeks ago, the Repsol Honda Team rider and rookie teammate Marc Márquez sandwiched the Yamaha Factory Racing bike of world champion Jorge Lorenzo. The majority of the field was again frustrated by inclement weather.

The day started off dry but rain later in the day resulted in much of the pack waiting in their garages. Pedrosa, who had aimed for a long stint and is now targeting that goal on Wednesday, topped the timesheets with his 2:01.580 lap time.

Valentino Rossi had also intended for efficient race-distance runs but will also have to wait, having placed his Yamaha fifth.

The conditions confirmed that LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl was fourth overall, continuing to analyze the two setup options he first tried at the earlier test. With his best dry time just 17 thousandths of a second slower than the slowest factory Honda racer, less than a second covered the top seven; that particular group was rounded out by Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow and GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Álvaro Bautista, with British rookie Bradley Smith ending the day firmly inside the top 10.

The Ducati Team also saw both of its runners finish inside the top ten, as Andrea Dovizioso and 2006 world champion Nicky Hayden managed eighth and ninth positions. The Audi-owned squad grabbed attention early on as it rolled out its machines with brand-new fuel tanks.

Further down the order, test riders from all three factory outfits worked on an assortment of programs with Katsayuki Nakasuga and Waturu Yoshikawa pairing up for Yamaha while Ducati ran Michele Pirro and Honda Takumi Takahashi.

At Ignite Pramac Racing Team, Ben Spies fought to 13th place as he continued to battle a shoulder injury, whereas teammate Andrea Iannone evaluated two engines in order to assess the weight distribution of his Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team machine.



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