The Repsol Honda team closes a complicated weekend in Mugello and is already thinking about Montmeló
After a promising start, Márquez's race ended when he fell on the second lap of the Italian circuit, while Pol managed to keep the twelfth position he achieved in qualifying.
The MotoGP World Championship returned this past weekend to the Mugello circuit to race the Italian Oakley Grand Prix. Free practice on Friday took place under clear skies, and both Marc Márquez and Pol Espargaró started off feeling good, both being able to make the most of the time available on the track on their respective Honda RC213Vs.
However, Marc and his team knew from the beginning that it was not going to be an easy weekend on the Italian circuit, with its 5.2 kilometers. The difficult braking that characterizes it and its famous turns do not help the Catalan rider and his current physical condition, still affected by the injury that kept him out for nine months without running last season. A fast lap placed the eight-time world champion in thirteenth place overall and just 0.013 seconds ahead of his teammate.
Pol took advantage of Friday to get used to the asphalt of Mugello with the RC213V. Cutting almost a full second off his best time between the two practice sessions, Espargaró and his team continued to try to improve grip when entering corners and at high lean angles. Like his teammate, Pol's last lap in Free Practice 2 turned out to be the best of the day, putting his 1'46.986 in 14th overall in combined times.
Already on Saturday, free practice 3 was another stable session in which Márquez was able to ride comfortably until the end, when #93 climbed to 12th place, just half a second behind the fastest rider and less than 0.150 seconds from achieving a place in the top 10. Marc played his cards to perfection and was able to join Espargaró in Q2, where the Cervera rider waited until the second half of the session to join the action on the track, always thinking of saving energy in his physical condition for Sunday's race. In which he would finally come out from eleventh place.
On his side, Pol Espargaró entered the top ten riders in the last minutes of free practice 3, thus culminating a very positive first session of the day. In Q1, the 1'45,858 scored by the Catalan rider was enough to be ninth overall and guarantee himself a place among the top twelve on the starting grid. The last test of the day did not go as planned, finishing Pol in 12th place. The team recognized that a different tire choice could have helped him finish later.
On Sunday, the heartbreaking news of the passing of young rider Jason Dupasquier, once again showing that motorcycling is a high-risk sport, cast a shadow on the Italian Grand Prix.
Pol Espargaró finished as he started in Mugello, in 12th place. That was the end of a difficult weekend, for both, Pol and the team. The damages suffered during the first few laps to the RC213V's aerodynamics compromised the Honda's performance and stability from the start.
Unfortunately, after a very promising start, Márquez's race ended on the second lap, when he fell at turn three. Although Marc was unscathed, the incident again showed that the eight-time world champion is still not running in top condition.
The seventh round will be held at home, for both Pol and Marc. The Montmeló circuit will host the Catalan Grand Prix next weekend, and the Repsol Honda Team riders hope to improve on Mugello's results on the Catalan circuit.