Márquez sets pace as riders trial circuit tweak
17 June 2014 – MotoGP World Champion Marc Márquez continued his strong form by topping Monday's post-race test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in Spain.
Márquez, who has won all seven races of the 2014 season, ended the day with a 1:41.184 to finish four hundredths ahead of Tech 3 rider Bradley Smith.
The test day also included a 30-minute trial of the configuration of the circuit currently used by Formula 1, which features the shorter loop at Turn 10.
MotoGP tested this layout amid safety concerns following a series of accidents in which a couple of riders hit the tyre wall, which cannot be moved back due to the position of the final chicane.
The response to the layout change was mixed, with Márquez in favour of the altered configuration but others, including Valentino Rossi, vehemently against its implementation. Riders will report their feedback to the Safety Commission at the next round in the Netherlands.
Behind Márquez and Smith was two-time World Champion Jorge Lorenzo, while Pol Espargaró made it three Yamaha bikes in the top four, ahead of LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl.
Andrea Iannone was the leading Ducati in sixth, with Dani Pedrosa seventh on the second works Honda.
Yonny Hernández wound up eighth, while Aleix Espargaró and Catalunya runner-up Rossi rounded out the top 10.
Suzuki continued its preparations for a 2015 return as Randy de Puniet sampled a new engine on his way to setting the 17th fastest time out of the 23 riders present.