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Advantage to Dovizioso on opening day

Advantage to Dovizioso on opening day

Ducati Team’s Andrea Dovizioso led the way at the Motul Grand Prix of Japan on Friday as the Italian took advantage of an extra soft tyre in FP2.

Friday started well for Dovizioso who continued to assess the GP14.2 upgrade to his Ducati, able to finish FP1 third. Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) continued his good form from Aragon to head Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) by 0.166s and Dovizioso was 0.234s behind the Yamaha factory rider in the morning run.

The final stages of FP2 saw the Italian rider fit the extra-soft compound tyre and push hard for a lap time, resulting in a 1’45.140s. This put the Ducati man top of the combined time sheets, leading Lorenzo by 0.440s.

Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) was down in fourth and over half a second slower than the Ducati rider. The two riders have battled hard for the final podium step in previous rounds.

The harder option tyre also had Dovizioso setting competitive lap times, the hard braking of the Motegi circuit suiting the Italian rider’s style.

“I felt really comfortable on the bike today. We were second until the last five minutes on the harder option tyre. I could make a similar lap time throughout on the hard tyre, I’m happy with the speed. We started with a really good setup from the chassis and electronics side and this has helped a lot,” commented a content Dovizioso.

He added, “We have to keep improving our speed to try and fight for the podium. This is our main aim. The new chassis doesn’t change how I ride the bike, the bike is better overall than last year. The electronics are better, everything is better and it gave me the chance to be faster.”

MotoGP, 2014, MOTUL GRAND PRIX OF JAPAN, Andrea Dovizioso, Ducati Team

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