Automotive News

Aprilia's Espargaro heads final day of mid-season

Aprilia's Espargaro heads final day of mid-season

Wednesday’s running at Misano was notable for the first outings on a MotoGP bike for Raul Fernandez and Remy Gardner on the Tech3 KTMs they will race in 2022.

The current Moto2 championship leaders and teammates took over from Iker Lecuona and Danilo Petrucci at Tech3 and completed 31 laps between them.

Fernandez was 0.726 seconds quicker than Gardner in 22nd and 25th, with the latter suffering a crash towards the end of the morning session.

Espargaro led the standings at the end of the morning session with a 1m31.599s as he continued to evaluate various developments on the RS-GP.

The four-hour afternoon session began with championship leader Fabio Quartararo topping the first hour with a 1m32.003s, the Yamaha rider trying the 2022 prototype M1 as well as various settings on his current machine.

Espargaro returned to the top of the standings in the second hour of the afternoon with a 1m31.743s, which he improved later to a 1m31.584s.

This lap time would go unchallenged through to the chequered flag as most of the field packed up early.

Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia didn’t set any times in the afternoon session but remained second overall with a 1m31.664s as he tried, amongst other things, a new fairing on his factory Ducati.

Joan Mir – who crashed in the afternoon session - completed the top three on his Suzuki as he tested the 2022 engine and chassis, as well as other 2021 items, with LCR’s Takaaki Nakagami and the other factory team Ducati of Jack Miller rounding out the top five.

Honda’s Pol Espargaro suffered a late technical issue in the afternoon session but was sixth overall, as he and teammate Marc Marquez put more miles on the radical 2022 RC213V prototype.

Quartararo was seventh in the end ahead of Aprilia’s Maverick Vinales, while ninth-placed Miguel Oliveira ended the test in buoyant fashion as he believes KTM has figured out what was causing its lack of pace in recent races.

Marquez completed the top 10 on the Honda, while 18th-placed Andrea Dovizioso discovered exactly where he needs to improve his riding style on the Petronas SRT Yamaha.

Misano podium star Enea Bastianini (Avintia Ducati) suffered another crash during the test in the morning session and didn’t ride again in the afternoon.



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