Pedrosa leads Friday practice in Czech Republic
Dani Pedrosa was fastest in both practice sessions today as the Repsol Honda rider topped yet another session in this year’s MotoGP championship.
After setting the best time in the morning FP1 session, Pedrosa set a time of 1’56.858 in FP2 to end the session and the day as the quickest rider, just 0.053 seconds ahead of Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, while Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Andrea Dovizioso was third fastest overall with a time of 1’57.055.
Almost every rider set their best lap time of the day on the combination of the softer rear and harder front slicks at a circuit where having good rear grip for drive out of corners, and the highest amount of front-end stability for confidence under braking and in high-speed corners is of utmost importance. Some riders performed long runs on the softer rear slick in FP2 with feedback suggesting good levels of durability with this option for both the works and CRT bikes, with widespread evaluation of the harder option rear slick - which was seldom used today - expected to take place tomorrow.
Weather forecasts indicate a good chance of rain tomorrow with Bridgestone’s main wet tyre for this weekend being the soft compound, although every rider will also have access to a limited number of the alternative hard compound wet tyre. If rain does occur in between sessions tomorrow causing track conditions to deteriorate without leaving the tarmac fully wet, the superior warm-up performance and edge grip of the softer slick compounds will make these options more suitable to riders heading out on a damp but drying track.
The MotoGP riders will next take to the Brno circuit for FP3 at 1010 local time (GMT +2) before the one hour qualifying session begins at 1355.
Shinji Aoki - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“Today we had warm and dry weather with most riders preferring the combination of the harder front and softer rear slick. Rider feedback from both the works and CRT riders indicates that the softer rear option is working well, with good levels of grip being maintained over longer runs, though testing of the harder rear slick tomorrow will help teams decide which is the better race option for them. At this stage it looks like we could have rain tomorrow and perhaps Sunday, in which case we will have both the soft compound as well as a limited number of hard compound wet tyres on standby for riders to use. The top eight riders today set personal best lap times within six-tenths of a second of each other, so this bodes well for a closely fought qualifying session tomorrow.”