Repsol Honda Team builds potential in Barcelona

A flying start to the day for Pol Espargaro and Marc Marquez, as only one second divides 17 drivers in Montmelo.

Friday in Barcelona presented the MotoGP World Championship starting field with a first foretaste of the new Turn 10 on MotoGP machines. The reaction to the revised corner has been positive and Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro are looking forward to driving it on Sunday. Both sides of the Repsol Honda team garage quickly became familiar with the revised layout and got down to work with their weekend plans. For the first time since racing here in 2019, a limited number of fans returned to the Barcelona-Catalunya circuit – the sound of their cheers was a welcome sound.

Pol Espargaro had an excellent start to his home Grand Prix, finishing in the top three throughout free practice 1. It was only in the final phase that he was pushed from second to third place and ended the session 0.349 seconds behind the top time. Practice 2 started in a similar way, with Espargaro setting a top five time almost immediately. The Granollers native worked his way through a number of points and secured his place in the top ten with a late round. With a 1: 39.983 he was tenth of the combined times and 0.748 seconds behind Zarco. The goal on Saturday is to improve the pace of his Honda RC213V by one lap.

There were no waiting times in Free Practice 2, as Marc Marquez set the pace right at the beginning of the session, led early and was immediately faster than his morning time. The session was stable for the eight-time world champion, who ended the day with a best time of 1’40.120. Despite being 15th overall, Marquez was within a second of the fastest time and just 0.137 seconds behind his teammate. Marquez and his team have identified several key areas that need to be improved tomorrow.

The action will continue tomorrow, with the crucial Free Practice 3 at 9:55 a.m. local time and qualifying, starting with Q1, later that day at 2:10 p.m. local time.