Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez led the way through both MotoGP practice sessions to open the 2014 round at Silverstone. LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl trailed in second position followed by Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso. Temperatures were cool, spots of rain made it to the ground throughout the day and the wind was up at times, but riders were able to log plenty of dry laps in preparation for the improved conditions (according to forecasts) on Saturday.
"Today I felt good from the beginning,” explained Marquez. “Silverstone is bit of a special track; there are many bumps and the temperatures are low, but we found a good base from the start and this helped us for the entire day. It is only Friday, but it is always important to start the weekend like this. For tomorrow we will try above all to improve how the bike absorbs the bumps, to go faster and take a small step forward.”
This wasn’t the case with #93’s primary rivals, with teammate Dani Pedrosa pacing ninth and citing a lack of grip as contributing to his difficulties throughout the day. Movistar Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi, both finishing outside the top-10, face similar issues as well.
“We only have one problem, it seems Bridgestone has brought the same tires that we had in the first races so we have the same problems as then,” said Lorenzo. “We have no grip to stop the bike, no grip in the middle of the corner and no traction so we have a lot of spinning and the negative point is it creates problem on the front. No grip on the rear doesn't give us the balance in the middle of the corner which means we have to lean less and have lower speed. All the Yamaha riders are the same, we have similar problems. It seems that with this tire we have now it's very difficult for us. Of course we are going to try everything to solve this problem, we have to try to manage the situation, the tires will be the same all weekend so we have to adapt to it. It seems it's going to be a hard weekend for the Yamaha riders.”
While the top-10 was dominated by Honda and Ducati, Tech 3’s Bradley Smith proved an exception with a fourth-place finish. The British rider brought a nearly unchanged set-up from Brno and afterwards stated that grip levels were good for him and that his confidence was high. Ducati’s Yonny Hernandez was fifth-fastest followed by Go & Fun Honda Gresini’s Scott Redding in sixth. Redding finished on the top-step at the circuit last year in Moto2.
Pramac Racing’s Andrea Iannone was seventh followed by Redding’s teammate, Alvaro Bautista, in eighth. NGM Mobile Forward Racing’s Aleix Espargaro rounded out the top-10.
MotoGP Silverstone Friday Results 2014
1. Marc Marquez (Honda) 2’02.126
2. Stefan Bradl (Honda) 2’02.635
3. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) 2’03.011
4. Bradley Smith (Yamaha) 2’03.070
5. Yonny Hernandez (Ducati) 2’03.327
6. Scott Redding (Honda) 2’03.333
7. Andrea Iannone (Ducati) 2’03.353
8. Alvaro Bautista (Honda) 2’03.391
9. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 2’03.410
10. Aleix Espargaro (Forward-Yamaha) 2’03.468
11. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 2’03.500
12. Pol Espargaro (Yamaha) 2’03.542
13. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 2’03.952
14. Cal Crutchlow (Ducati) 2’04.057
15. Alex De Angelis (Forward-Yamaha) 2’04.411
16. Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda) 2’04.762
17. Leon Camier (Honda) 2’04.928
18. Karel Abraham (Honda) 2’05.002
19. Danilo Petrucci (ART) 2’05.827
20. Michael Laverty (PBM) 2’06.335
21. Hector Barbera (Avintia) 2’06.369
22. Broc Parkes (PBM) 2’07.855
23. Mike Di Meglio (Avintia) 2’08.397