These just in:
Rookie phenomenon Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) went faster than his Czech GP FP2 time to top the timesheets at the one-day Brno Test. The Frenchman’s 1:55.616 was 0.012 ahead of second-fastest Maverick Viñales as he and Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP teammate Valentino Rossi got their hands on an early 2020 YZR-M1 prototype, with Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) making it an Iwata factory 1-2-3 on Monday.
One of the key talking points leading up to the Brno Test was Yamaha rolling out a first version of next year’s bike. Rossi was out on a blacked-out YZR-M1 early in the day as he and teammate Viñales got their first taste of what the 2020 bike will be like, and the duo had a new seat unit to test for their 2019 bikes. They were out on track until the chequered flag was waved as ‘The Doctor’ shot up to P6 on his final run, with 63 laps completed by the nine-time Champion. Viñales got 74 laps under his belt ahead of Austria.
In the Petronas Yamaha SRT box, pacesetter Quartararo tested carbon forks on his M1, the same as the factory team use. Meanwhile, Morbidelli improved his time last in the session to set the third quickest time of the day and got a solid 78 laps under his belt – the same as Quartararo. The Italian tried a thumb brake which he has already used on some occasions, but his main focus was on settings.
Czech GP winner and Championship leader Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) had three bikes at his disposal for the Brno Test. One was the one he raced with which has no carbon fibre reinforcements, the second had a small carbon fibre insert near the steering head and the third had a smaller carbon fibre insert. The seven-time Champion also tried a new Honda aero package on one of the RC213Vs, but he did most of his work on his standard bike and as he completed 70 laps, finishing eighth on the timesheets…likely not pushing too hard on test duty.
Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) also had three bikes to play with during the test. Similar to Marquez, one was his standard 2019 bike while another had the reinforced carbon chassis. Another had some “test items” on it and, again similar to Marquez, the British rider did most of his work on his standard 2019 package and ended the day P5. Teammate Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu) was mainly focusing on improving his setup, with the Japanese rider doing a Michelin tyre test at the end of the day to work on edge grip.
At Team Suzuki Ecstar, there was a high-speed crash for rookie Joan Mir with just under 45 minutes of the session remaining that brought out the Red Flag. Mir’s GSX-RR ended over the fence at Turn 1 and as a precaution, the Spaniard was taken to hospital for further checks. For teammate Alex Rins, work with the new aero package we saw across the weekend was his main focus, but he also had a small evolution on the chassis and swingarm that he tested in Barcelona. The Spaniard finished fourth fastest having completed 69 laps at Brno, with Mir also completing 69 laps – some while using the aero package for the first time – before his crash saw him end the test in seventh.
Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso completed a steady 48 laps on Monday to finish 12th on the times, with the Italian testing a new swingarm for the Bologna factory. Teammate Danilo Petrucci was working on setup as they try to understand why the performance wasn’t quite there at Brno. In the Pramac Racing box, Czech GP podium finisher Jack Miller confirmed he had been trying a new Ducati chassis during the weekend. The Australian was back to the one he used for the first half of the season for most of Monday’s test, with Miller doing back-to-back runs to confirm the new one was the way forward. Moreover, he made progress with the rear shock. Teammate Francesco Bagnaia was focused on getting more miles under his belt and having found a new setup in FP4 at Brno, the reigning Moto2™ World Champion will hope to take more confidence into Austria. Bagnaia ended the test as the fastest Ducati, placing ninth – 0.632 from Quartararo’s time.
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Johann Zarco had a short day to keep his energy levels high for the team’s home race in Austria this weekend, with the Frenchman completing the least laps of anyone – 31. On the other side of the garage, Pol Espargaro did 49 laps as KTM worked on a little bit of everything: settings, electronics, chassis, aero package and suspension. Red Bull KTM Tech 3’s Miguel Oliveira got the chance to ride a full factory spec machine as well at Brno, impressively finishing the day just over a tenth off Espargaro on the timesheets as they took P14 and P15.
Aleix Espargaro had a carbon-reinforced chassis to try during the morning hours for Aprilia Racing Team Gresini, and in the afternoon the Spaniard tested a new swingarm for the Noale factory. He did 57 laps, with teammate Andrea Iannone doing 52.
It’s time for a couple of days rest after a busy day at the Czech adrenaline factory, but the riders are back on track for FP1 in Austria on Friday as the action kicks off at the Red Bull Ring.
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team’s Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi wrapped up a long weekend at the Automotodrom Brno today, succesfully completing the MotoGP Brno Test. Both riders were back on track for the eight-hour session, during which they had the chance to test prototype material.
The MotoGP Brno Test was the first opportunity for the Yamaha Factory Team to try a new engine spec, aimed at an increased top speed and improved rideability, as well as some other testing items, among them two new Michelin tyres and a medium rear with the existing casing and a new compound on the left-hand side.
Viñales, as usual, showed his hard-working nature, riding until the very end of the session and completing 74 laps in total. His best time of 1‘55.628s was set in the final stages, on lap 68, earning him second place, just 0.012s from first. Today‘s outing was overall successful for the Spaniard. He worked mainly on improving the 2019 bike‘s performance for the next races and is looking forward to stepping up to the challenge in the Austrian Grand Prix.
Rossi also had a very productive day of testing in Brno. He spent time trying the 2020 prototype “black bike”, as well as the standard 2019 YZR-M1. The Doctor completed 63 laps in total and really put his head down on the last stint. His final lap saw him move up to sixth place with a 1‘56.015s and a 0.399s gap to first. His time was 0.512s quicker than the Italian‘s best time set during the Czech GP weekend, giving him a confidence boost that he is working in the right direction.
“After yesterday‘s race, it was good that we got extra time at the Brno track so we could get to work again. We had some slight rain in the afternoon, but there was enough dry track time to complete our testing schedule. Vale and Maverick made the most of it and tried new items, such as the new engine spec, as well as the tyres Michelin brought. They also tried the 2020 prototype bike. Valentino more so than Maverick, who preferred to concentrate on his 2019 bike. Overall, the rider feedback has been positive, so we can be satisfied with the progress, though it‘s just the first step. At the end of the day, all Yamahas are in the top-6 and the times are similar, indicating we are collectively heading in the right direction. We will go over all the data that we‘ve assembled here, both during today‘s test and the last GP weekend. The Yamaha engineers will prepare the next steps forward accordingly. Meanwhile, we now head to Spielberg for the next race with a positive mindset.”
“Today I was working on improving the feeling on the bike that I had during the race. Luckily, this morning the grip of the track was very low, so this actually helped us to work pretty hard and we found a way to be better. But the tests are always great for us, so this is nothing new. We will keep trying to stay calm and stay focused in Austria. I tried the prototype for a few laps, but I preferred to concentrate on improving my 2019 bike for Austria. The laps on the 2020 bike were good though, they were good lap times, so we will see at the next test.”
“It was a good day and a good test, because we worked quite a lot and we found something good. We also tried the prototype of the new bike, but sincerely we don‘t have a lot of changes, it‘s a different engine and a slightly different setting of the chassis. But these are just the first touches, and what we have is already good. After that we worked more with the standard 2019 bike. Some things on the 2020 prototype are good, some things need to be tested again in Misano. This is to be expected because it‘s just a trial run, and we might have something else at the next tests, later on this season.”
Official MotoGP testing at Brno concludes for the Ducati Team riders
The one-day official MotoGP test which was held at the Brno circuit in the Czech Republic concluded this evening.
Danilo Petrucci completed a total of 60 laps, setting a best time of 1’56.345, the Italian concentrating mainly on establishing a good feeling with his Desmosedici GP following yesterday’s difficult race.
Andrea Dovizioso on the other hand was able to make a detailed back-to-back comparison between the two aerodynamic packages available, as well as trying out some new technical chassis solutions and a new tyre made available by Michelin. The Italian ended the day with a best time of 1’56.391 after completing a total of 48 laps.
Danilo Petrucci (Ducati Team #9) – 10th – 1’56.345 (60 laps)
“Today was surely positive because we had all the time we needed to work calmly. I used a medium tyre all day and in the final stages I was quite fast. We did a great job and I’m happy I found a good feeling, something which had been missing throughout the weekend. We had a lot of different things to test, but after yesterday’s problems in the race we decided to change our work schedule and focus on finding good pace again. I improved the bike’s stability a bit and above all the bike’s turn-in in the corners. Hopefully this will also help us in Austria, where I want to get back to being at the front again.”
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 12th – 1’56.391 (48 laps)
“It was important to do this test and I’m happy with the way things went today because we were able to make a detailed comparison between the new fairing and the one used until Brno, which gave us a positive response. We also had some new chassis solutions to try and these proved to be interesting, even though with the drop in the tyres it’s not always easy to make a comparison between different material. Finally, we also tried the new tyre that Michelin brought along and I had a particularly good feeling with that. Now we are going to Austria confident of being able to put in a good performance.”
Red Bull KTM Tech3 duo works through intense testing program in Brno
Miguel Oliveira and Hafizh Syahrin conducted a very fruitful day of testing today following the Czech Grand Prix in Brno. With plenty of new parts from KTM to try, Oliveira did 54 laps throughout Monday to end up just 0.466 seconds behind the top 10 of the ultra-competitive MotoGP field, while Syahrin lapped the Automotodrom Brno 43 times, concentrated on his riding and finished 0.799 seconds behind his teammate.
“Overall it was a quite positive day. We have been very, very close to the top and mid-grid for the classification. Today the target wasn’t to do a fast lap, as we just wanted to try the parts that the factory team gave to us related to some things to the frame, some things to the engine, small details, that don’t make a big difference themselves, but in the package helped us a lot to improve.”
“There were not too many parts we tried today, but we focused mainly on my riding. Plus, we tried something different with the electronics and we had two tyres from Michelin, which we tested. We tried and both of them were positive. I tried to improve my riding, although I probably tried a bit too hard this morning in turn five and came off the track, but it was not a huge crash, so in the end everything was fine and we found back to our rhythm. We used the test engine, which is different to the one in the race, so overall it was a positive day. Now we need to focus for the home GP of KTM. We will try our best there and I hope we can do well in Austria.”
Marquez makes the most of truncated Monday test in Brno
Marc Marquez completed 70 laps during the one-day post-race test at the Automotodrom Brno with a best time of 1’56.237 for eighth place.
Despite a clear sky in the morning, early afternoon showers reduced running time at the post-race Brno test by around an hour. With Sunday’s victory still fresh in his mind, Marc Marquez rolled out of the pits shortly after 11:00 local time and began the day’s testing schedule.
Swapping between three bikes, the MotoGP World Championship leader completed a total of 70 laps throughout the course of the day. A best time of 1’56.237 saw Marquez conclude the test as the eighth fastest riders and left him pleased with the progress made and the knowledge gained.
Cal Crutchlow ended as the highest placed Honda rider in fifth aboard his LCR Honda.
The Repsol Honda Team, Marc Marquez and Stefan Bradl now head south for the Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring, August 09 – 11, where they aim to continue their impressive 2019 form and defend their 63-point lead in the standings.
“In the end we did more laps than we had planned. But we had many things to do as HRC brought many things and Michelin had two tyres for us to try as well. We had different things on the bike, some new frames and some aerodynamics – it was all very interesting and some of them could help us in the next race. We’re also thinking about the future further ahead. It was a good test and we were able to understand some more things.”
KTM makes further gains at Brno test and before home MotoGP
MotoGP 2019 IRTA test Brno (CZE)
In the immediate wake of round ten of 2019 MotoGP the Red Bull KTM teams were again testing with the rest of the grid around the Automotodrom Brno. All four riders logged almost 200 quick laps to gain more vital information in the current development plan of the RC16.
Less than twenty-four hours after KTM placed three RC16s in the points of the Monster Energy Ceske republiky MotoGP – and just four days before the paddock forms again for the myWorld Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg – both Red Bull KTM and Red Bull KTM Tech3 were once more lapping the 5.4km layout.
Pol Espargaro (14th) was the quickest from the group with an effort that was a second away from Fabio Quartararo at the top of the time sheets and achieved on the 25th of 49 laps as the Spaniard worked through engine settings and electronics among other details. Johann Zarco (20th), still feeling the positive energy of his front row qualification effort on Saturday finished the test early in the afternoon after riding 31 laps. Miguel Oliveira (15th) and Hafizh Syahrin (19th) managed almost a hundred circulations between them and the Portuguese ended the day less than half a second from the top ten.
All thoughts now turn to the inviting straights and fast turns of the Red Bull Ring where KTM will enjoy more passionate home support.
Pol Espargaro: “It’s tricky to make a hot lap when you are trying many changes. First of all we analysed the problems we had from the race: why we could not make the top ten and why we suffered when the rear tyre was used. Tests like these are always useful for making conclusions and finding solutions and today was positive for that. We worked on the engine, electronics, the rear shock to look for a smoother delivery and less wheel spin. We are looking forward to the home GP now and all those orange flags. I missed the race last year and that outstanding experience of feeling all that support.”
Johann Zarco: “I didn’t do so many laps today: we wanted to try things but also keep good energy for Spielberg. We gathered some important information but our base will more or less remain the same for next weekend because it is a totally different track compared to here. I’m still trying to improve my riding style. It is hard work but I am doing the best training possible to achieve this. I love Red Bull Ring and have had some good results there. We’ll see how we can manage the bike. We know it is an important track for the engine and we know our bike is quite fast. Let’s see.”
Miguel Oliveira: “We have been very, very close to the top and mid-grid for the classification. Today the target wasn’t to do a fast lap, as we just wanted to try the parts that the factory team gave to us related to some things to the frame, some things to the engine, small details, that don’t make a big difference themselves but in the package helped us a lot to improve.”
Hafizh Syahrin: “There were not too many parts we tried today; we focused mainly on my riding. Plus, we tried something different with the electronics and we had two tyres from Michelin, which we tested. I probably tried a bit too hard this morning in turn five and came off the track but it was not a huge crash, so in the end everything was fine. We used the test engine, which is different to the one in the race, so overall it was a positive day.”
Mike Leitner, Red Bull KTM Team Manager: “We didn’t want to take many risks at this test so we are happy with the outcome of trying some new items with good potential. We worked on our specs like aerodynamics and also an idea for the chassis as well as the engine. It was a fundamental test that gave us a few positive points for the future. In the coming days we’ll make analysis of what – and when – we can use for our race bike. Conditions were good here today and it was not our target to go for the best lap-time.”
Sebastian Risse, Red Bull KTM Technical Director: “We had an intense test today with a good learning curve and some nice results. We tried some items on most areas of the bike: engine and calibration, suspension, aerodynamics. It was more about hardware for Pol and more about setting for Johann. We have some more of these items available for an update for Spielberg but we have to evaluate when it is the right time to bring them. Anyway, it has been positive step compared to the data we gained from the race and we are confident to go to our home GP.”
Brno IRTA Test Day final times
1. Fabio Quartararo (FRA), Yamaha 1:55.616
2. Maverick Viñales (SPA), Yamaha +0.012
3. Franco Morbidelli (ITA), Honda +0.139
4. Alex Rins (SPA), Suzuki +0.221
5. Cal Crutchlow (GBR), Honda +0.324
14. Pol Espargaro (SPA), Red Bull KTM +1.065
15. Miguel Oliveira (POR), Red Bull KTM Tech3 +1.195
19. Hafizh Syahrin (MYS), Red Bull KTM Tech3 +1.994
20. Johann Zarco (FRA), Red Bull KTM +2.153
The PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team duo of Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli have rounded off their Czech Grand Prix weekend in perfect form by finishing Monday’s official test at the Automotodrom Brno circuit first and third.
Quartararo was able to make the most of the day’s eight hours of track activity, with new carbon front forks among a host of parts trialled by the Frenchman. Delighted by his progress and able to be not only fast but consistent, he’s set himself up perfectly for this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix.
Team-mate Morbidelli was able to bounce back in fine form during the test as well, after getting taken out of yesterday’s race. Finishing third, the big set-up change for the Italian-Brazilian was working on adapting to a thumb-operated brake for the first time.
There’s no break for Quartararo and Morbidelli, with back to back races meaning they go directly to the next round of the 2019 MotoGP action at the Red Bull Ring, with practice getting underway on Friday 9th August for the Austrian Grand Prix.
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“We tried some changes with the electronics and other settings, and I think we’ve improved the package, although of course we’re going to have to wait and see how the bike reacts to them next weekend in Austria before we can be certain. I worked with a thumb brake for the first time and the initial feeling was good, but it’s going to take some time to get used to it. All in all, I’m happy and it’s always nice to finish a test in the top three.”
“Today was really productive for us and we tried many things including some elements for the coming weekend in Austria. As always in testing there was some positives and some negatives, but in the end it was useful to test again. We tried the new carbon forks and the bike felt a little bit lighter with them, we tried some new tyres from Michelin and we were able to use some electronics settings that the team has wanted to test. We need to think about what we’ve tested and have some discussions about the direction that we’ll take with the new parts.”
Following his excellent fifth-placed finish in the Czech Republic Grand Prix, Cal Crutchlow returned to the Brno circuit today for an official MotoGP testing session. The LCR Honda CASTROL rider was looking to build on his yesterday’s fine performance as he tested some new parts from Honda ahead of next weekend’s Austrian GP.
Crutchlow was testing three different chassis on Monday as he looks to try and improve his feeling with the RC213V. After a weekend of mixed weather, the Briton was able to carry out his work in dry and warm conditions and paid tribute to Honda for their continued hard work in trying to advance his machinery.
Cal Crutchlow – 5th
(1’55.940 – lap 59 of 74)
“I have my standard race bike that I’ve been using this year, I have one updated chassis and then the other one is some test items on the bike. In the end, I’m doing most of my work on the standard bike that I’ve been racing all year. The feeling is obviously different on all three bikes with the parts we’re testing, but we have to give credit to Honda as they’re working very, very hard to improve our feeling with the bike – my feeling and also the other riders’ feeling. This is the first time I’ve used new chassis and I think there are some positives and negatives to it and I still feel more comfortable with my standard one.”