Valentino Rossi said it yesterday in the post practice conference, ‘Marc Marquez is the favorite to win in Austin’ and if the Repsol Honda rookie does it on Sunday he’ll beat not only Freddie Spencer’s record and become the youngest ever race winner, but he’ll also do better than Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa in their first year in MotoGP, as Pedrosa won his first MotoGP race on the fourth try, while Lorenzo won on his third race in the series.
Despite the Repsol Honda duo doing 1-2 in the yesterday’s FP2, only Marquez seeemed satisfied as he set a blistering pace unmatchable so far by anyone else, and obviously the Spaniard is happy, but he is keeping his feet firmly planted on the ground, but he knows that the RC213V rules on the stop-and-go Austin track.
“It’s been a very positive first day.
We took the top time and, even though these are only practice sessions, this is important.
I think that the key to this Grand Prix is that day-after-day, session-by-session, the grip levels will improve.
We have to be aware of this and also to the temperatures – which vary a lot, with much more heat in the afternoon than in the morning.
We need to find which tyre works best for every session, and above all we will be working with the race in mind.
Let’s see if tomorrow we can continue along the same upward path,” said Marquez.
Getting beat by his team mate in Qatar was already hard to take for Dani Pedrosa, and now he knows how Valentino Rossi felt back in 2008 when a certain upstart by the name of Jorge Lorenzo came aboard, but seeing a rookie set a blaze around the Circuit of the Americas with the bike that he developed, still has to hurt.
Pedrosa didn’t mince words yesterday regarding the grip levels of the track even if he was second fastest, but he still hopes to be able to shorten the gap that separates him from Marquez, stating that it is almost impossible to find a good setting due to the changing grip levels and that wants to find a good one so he won’t have to physically fight with his Honda.
“Today was a difficult day, because the track had no grip and in general I think all the riders had problems leaning the bike over in the corners.
In the morning the tyres took a bit of a beating, but in the afternoon the situation improved a little.
In the second session we were able to ride a little better, although I hope that the circuit grip levels increase in the run up to the race, so that we can also improve with them,” said Pedrosa.