MotoGP World Championship leader Marc Marquez was competitive amongst the fast-starting Yamaha’s, with the Spaniard third fastest on the opening day of action at the San Marino Grand Prix at Misano.
The Spaniard was the meat in a Yamaha sandwich, with two M1’s in both first and second and two more in fourth and fifth, either side of the Repsol Honda of Marquez. Yamaha’s pace was surprising to some, however Marquez admitted that the pace shown through testing a couple of weeks ago, meant he wasn’t surprised to see them so high on the timing sheets.
“As of Brno, the Yamahas have been fast, but then they suffer come Sunday,” said the 26-year-old.
“They were fast in testing here at Misano, they have strong points but also some weak points.
“In any case, the important thing is that we are up there with the, sometimes it’s Ducatis, other times it’s Yamahas, but all that matters are that we’re also in the mix.”
2019 has seen some real maturation in the way Marquez approaches his weekends, with a much bigger focus on race pace and setting up for the race, rather than one-lap pace, through Friday’s free practice sessions.
Today was no different, with Marquez working on different compounds of tyres, searching for the perfect set up for Sunday.
“I started the morning with a pair of medium tyres, before switching to the hard front and soft rear in the afternoon,” he said.
“At the end I put in the used medium at the front to understand certain things. Sometimes you have to forget about lap times and focus on the work in order to find the right way.”
The was a hair raising moment for Marquez during FP1, after following Alex Rins closely, the World Champion almost hit the back of the Suzuki. When asked what happened, Marquez said: “I was coming up fast and wanted to pass him, but the Suzuki is able to brake very late so to avoid contact I ran ride, playing safe as there was no point taking a risk.
“I don’t go with that intention, but if it happens it can be useful and tell you something about the other bikes characteristics.”