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Aleix Espargaro (Team Suzuki Ecstar) will line up on the grid in P6 for the Motul Grand Prix of Japan, just ahead of teammate Maverick Viñales as the two men race at the home round of the Hamamatsu factory. Viñales has been the top Suzuki rider in recent races, but Espargaro is now lighting up the inter-team rivalry well as the flyaway stint gets underway - after finding improvements in Aragon. Only 0.045 separated the two, with Espargaro’s 1'44.494 proving enough to keep him on the second row – and Viñales demoted to head up row three.
Aleix Espargaro (P6 - 1'44.494): “I’m happy overall. The most important thing is that from Aragon I’ve felt a bit better and started to enjoy it and ride aggressively again. Here we made another step. Yesterday was a great day for me and today we’ve improved the bike again – sincerely I was looking to fight for the first row, so we missed that but sixth is a great place to start tomorrow’s race. In FP4 I was quite strong – I wasn’t expecting to go that fast, and with the used tyre I felt great. So I think we’re more than ready.”
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