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Bagnaia keeps the record of the absent Marc Márquez

Francesco Bagnaia, during the first day of the German GP. / afp

German GP

Ducati flies one lap on the first day of training for the German GP and Aleix Espargaró reinforces his confidence

Ducati once again showed its muscle this Friday at the Sachsenring, in an interesting appetizer about what could be seen this Saturday, when the starting grid for the German GP is decided. A key moment for riders and teams, aware of the complications that MotoGP have at the moment to overtake in the race, with their excessive dependence on aerodynamics and other devices designed by factories to continue lowering records. Above all, those that initially helped to improve the exits, which recently have been reinterpreted to be used in the middle of a lap to increase the performance of the prototypes in acceleration in the final part of the curves.

The Italian brand did something that is already becoming the norm, placing many of its prototypes in the group of the top ten, those that would provisionally be in Q2. This time to six, when others like KTM (Miguel Oliveira was second in last year’s race) or Honda (winner of the last ten German Grands Prix, eight of them with Marc Márquez) saw their eight riders out of those positions. . Fabio Di Giannantonio ninth, Jorge Martín sixth, Johann Zarco fifth, Jack Miller third, Luca Marini second and Pecco Bagnaia first. And with this last one, the fastest on the first day in Saxony, putting on a real display. Because two of his laps in the second free practice improved the one that came as the absolute record of the track, a 1’20.195 that had given Márquez pole position in 2019.

«I have been at home these days reviewing what Marc was doing here, and it was seen that he was doing something different. I’ve tried it and it’s worked out well, “acknowledged Bagnaia, who first lowered that time by 67 thousandths, to take 114 more on his next lap. «Marc interprets the circuit in a slightly different way and has helped me try different things because it is a circuit that demands other things from you because of how it is. I’m not doing it like Marc, because that’s impossible, but the way my bike is, I’m doing it quite well”, admitted Bagnaia. And not only did he improve on Márquez, because Marini was also capable of doing it, which shows the level that Ducati has in one lap. Because thinking about the race, a priori Bagnaia should face the leader of the category, Fabio Quartararo, seventh and within that group of ten, and with Aleix Espargaró, fourth and who has between eyebrows to forget his error in Montmeló with a win at the Sachsenring, a result that would also allow him to squeeze Quartararo in the general classification.

Viñales, eighth

“With the race tire I was very, very fast, and the pace was very good, more than I expected,” confessed the Aprilia rider, whose teammate, Maverick Viñales, also made it into the top ten ( was eighth, with Joan Mir tenth completing that group). Espargaró remains second overall, 22 points behind the first, when the championship is about to cross its halfway point. A situation that he had not faced before in his sports career and that he faces when he is about to turn 33.

“The pressure I’m experiencing this year I’ve never experienced before. How old is Fabio? 23, 24? He can win ten titles, but I don’t think I can do it when he is 40. This year I am having this opportunity, and I am very focused on taking advantage of it », he assured. An opportunity to fight against riders from another generation, taking advantage of both his personal and family stability, as well as the good condition of his bike, the great revelation of the season, as well as his good situation, already aware that his sporting future for 2023 and 2024 is signed with its current brand.

An important detail in a course in which many of the riders on the queen class grid have to compete with part of their minds focused on where they will be next season. A situation in which there are names like Joan Mir (whose destiny should be Repsol Honda as Marc Márquez’s partner although weeks continue to pass without it being closed), Álex Rins, Jorge Martín, Pol Espargaró, Alex Márquez or Raúl Fernández, each one in a different position, although all to a greater or lesser extent conditioned by this circumstance that has already consumed almost half of the season.

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