November 28, 2023
Sepang MotoGP Check: Luca Marini: ‘Good’ take a look at, lap time ‘unimaginable’, ‘ghost struggle’ | MotoGP

The VR46 Ducati rider progressed from thirteenth on day one, to seventh on day two, then turned one in all solely two riders – alongside Ducati’s reigning champion Francesco Bagnaia – to interrupt the 1m 58s barrier to steer day three.

“Nice approach to begin this season. It was a unbelievable take a look at. I feel the programme that we made is superb and I’m actually pleased that we tried every little thing we would have liked to strive,” Marini stated.

“We improved the bike, the engine braking, the traction space, the sensation additionally with the bike with the setting, the entrance feeling: actually an ideal take a look at in my view. We labored very well.

“The lap-time can be unimaginable, as is the classification. Franco [Morbidelli] is twentieth and solely one-second from me.

“I feel 20 riders in a single second is one thing unbelievable and a ‘dangerous’ signal in my view for us, as a result of the extent this yr might be unimaginable and each rider can win but in addition it is going to be essential to remain ‘there’ every weekend.”

It wasn’t solely Marini’s one-off lap time that was spectacular, he was additionally one of many few riders to do a ‘Dash race’ simulation. All of Marini’s laps throughout that 10-lap run have been within the 1m 59s, with a median of 1m 59.446s and better of 1m 59.144s.

The one different rider do a Dash simulation on Sunday was LCR Honda’s Alex Rins, who set a median time of 1m 59.927s and better of 1m 59.646s.

For comparability, in October’s full (20-lap) Malaysian Grand Prix, solely 5 riders dropped into the 1m 59s, with a better of 1m 59.634 by Jorge Martin (Pramac Ducati).

‘Ghost struggle’

“My tempo within the Dash race simulation was good and I’m actually glad as a result of using in 59 low each lap was good,” stated Marini, who additionally revealed he had tried to imitate some final lap battles:

“I additionally tried to make some overtakes to some ‘ghost’! Particularly within the final lap I attempted to ‘struggle’ as a result of I feel the Dash race might be very completely different in comparison with using alone.”

By way of common lap time over all three days, Chris Pike’s evaluation put Marini third behind Bagnaia and Martin:

Marini is remaining on a GP22 this yr however crucially switching from the ‘full’ 2022 engine spec he used final season, to the hybrid ‘21-22’ spec homologated by Bagnaia and Jack Miller on the manufacturing unit crew.

“It is a good package deal as a result of, ultimately, Pecco received the championship with this bike and I’m very pleased to experience it this yr whereas hoping they don’t convey too many good new elements to them [factory guys] as a result of it appears like they made an enormous step, the GP23 appears prepared…”

Though nonetheless being refined Bagnaia, Enea Bastianini and Jorge Martin all put the brand new GP23 inside the highest 5 on the ultimate timesheets with Marini’s team-mate Marco Bezzecchi was eighth quickest +0.474s.

Marini will try to finish a clear sweep of the 2022-2023 MotoGP winter checks at Portimao on March 11-12.