High-profile MotoGP rookie Alex Marquez finished the Sepang test only seven-tenths slower than fastest man Fabio Quartararo on new-tyre pace and says he needs to focus on managing his speed on worn rubber.
Marquez didn’t put in a race simulation on Sunday but managed eight sub-2’00 laps with a best of 1’59.042 which was only three-tenths down on older brother and Repsol Honda team-mate Marc.
“I’m feeling every day a little bit better, every day we’re a little bit faster. Every day improving, it’s quite important, this is the main important thing for me,” said Marquez Jr at the track.
“We know that now in the pre-season we have only three days more and we have to be ready for the Qatar GP, but we are closer every day.
“Okay, we need to improve more, I need to learn some things, especially with used tyres. Still something to improve, also with new in the time attack.
“But every day I’m learning more from the bike, feeling more from the bike. So, happy for that. The general conclusion is really, really positive.”
Team boss Alberto Puig, not known for blowing sunshine up anyone’s arse apart from his own, said he was surprised by Marquez’ pace at Sepang.
“He was a little bit better than we expected. This class is difficult and here in Sepang, first test is complicated. But the guy, you can feel he has a method, very structured,” said Puig.
He’s been very different from his brother in terms of how he approaches the bike, but the basics in terms of how he understands this job is very similar.
“They have a very similar mental programme to the way they talk, the way they analyse, the way they prepare for the test.
“So, yeah, it will not be easy at all for him. You saw the times yesterday, the class is going to be super tight I think like always. But we must give him hope and a chance and we are going to support him.”