Lorenzo on top in Valencia test

Lorenzo on top in Valencia test


Lorenzo on top in Valencia test


Jorge Lorenzo set the pace in MotoGP’s post-season test at Valencia, just a day after surrendering his championship crown to rookie Marc Marquez.

Cal Crutchlow was sixth fastest on his first day as a works Ducati rider, finishing just over one tenth of a second down on new teammate Andrea Dovizioso.

This year’s Moto2 champion Pol Espargaro made his first appearance for the Tech 3 Yamaha squad, ending the day 10th overall. His 2013 rival Scott Redding, meanwhile, gave Honda’s new prototype bike its first official run-out in what was also his first test with new team Gresini. The Briton was 11th fastest.

Honda’s newly crowned champion Marc Marquez and his teammate Dani Pedrosa opted to sit out the first day of the test, although both are expected to run tomorrow.

Valentino Rossi, now working under new crew chief Silvano Galbusera, finished second overall and just 0.093s shy of Lorenzo’s benchmark 1m31.257s, which came in the final hour of the day. Both Lorenzo and Rossi set their fastest times on a 2013-spec bike, although Rossi also trialled the 2014 development machine Yamaha has brought for both men to sample.

Stefan Bradl put Honda’s satellite LCR squad third overall, ahead of a Ducati quintet headed by Andrea Iannone, running with the satellite Pramac squad, Dovizioso and Crutchlow. The Briton has taken Italian crew chief Daniele Romagnoli across with him following his move from Tech 3. The pair were working alongside Ducati Corse’s new general manager Gigi Dall’Igna.

Official test rider Michelle Pirro was next up, with Yonny Hernandez, who will retain his Pramac ride full time for the 2014 season, in eighth. Hiroshi Aoyama, who also had a 2014 ride with Aspar confirmed in the last two days, was ninth for his new team.

The team only had one of its new Hondas ready for the first day of testing, meaning 2006 world champion Nicky Hayden did not participate. He is expected to join tomorrow.

Bradley Smith and Randy de Puniet are also set to join the test tomorrow, for the Tech 3 and Paul Bird teams, respectively. 2008 125cc champion Mike di Meglio, who has not ridden since suffering a serious injury in a Moto2 crash at Brno in August, made a surprise outing for Avintia, finishing 14th.

Pos Rider             Bike                 Time       Gap     Laps 1. Jorge Lorenzo     Yamaha               1m31.257s           48 2. Valentino Rossi   Yamaha               1m31.350s  +0.093s  42 3. Stefan Bradl      LCR Honda            1m31.751s  +0.494s  40 4. Andrea Iannone    Pramac Ducati        1m31.925s  +0.668s  49 5. Andrea Dovizioso  Ducati               1m31.943s  +0.686s  36 6. Cal Crutchlow     Ducati               1m32.054s  +0.797s  39 7. Michele Pirro     Ducati               1m32.698s  +1.441s  32 8. Yonny Hernandez   Pramac Ducati        1m32.745s  +1.488s  37 9. Hiroshi Aoyama    Aspar Honda          1m33.020s  +1.763s  3810. Pol Espargaro     Tech 3 Yamaha        1m33.187s  +1.930s  4511. Scott Redding     Gresini Honda        1m34.195s  +2.938s  3412. Michael Laverty   PBM Aprilia          1m34.378s  +3.121s  1713. Martin Bauer      Remus Suter-BMW      1m35.115s  +3.858s  2714. Mike di Meglio    Avintia-FTR Kawasaki 1m36.304s  +5.047s  26