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Jorge Martin (Del Conca Gresini Moto3) made a habit of going fast in 2017 as he took pole in half the races, and 2018 has begun much the same for the Spaniard as he took to the top in testing. But expected key rival Enea Bastianini (Leopard Racing) made it far from easy, ending the three days of Official testing just 0.095 in arrears. Behind the two Hondas at the top, Italian sophomore Marco Bezzechi (PruestelGP) kept KTM close behind, 0.007 further back.
It was a tight first test for the Moto3™ field despite early delays and some difficult conditions. After Tuesday was affected by rain, cold temperatures then delayed action on both subsequent days – but warmer afternoons allowed the paddock to get down to work for the first Official Test of 2018.
Behind the top three, the gaps didn’t get any bigger. Day 2 crasher Aron Canet (EG 0,0) was fourth overall and only 0.017 off Bezzecchi, with exactly the same gap back to Niccolo Antonelli (SIC58 Squadra Corse) in fifth as the Italian gets up to speed quickly in his new team, much like compatriot Bastianini. Philipp Oettl (Südmetall Schedl GP Racing) broke the Spanish and Italian dominion at the top in six, with the German on the Austrian bike a tenth and a half further back.
Tony Arbolino (Marinelli Snipers Team) was eighth quickest, ahead of Albert Arenas (Angel Nieto Team Moto3) despite a crash, and Alonso Lopez (EG 0,0) was impressive on his debut; the Spaniard the quickest rookie. Gabriel Rodrigo (RBA BOE Skull Rider) was tenth overall, having gone quickest on Day 2 ad that laptime putting him in P10 on the combined.
Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) was P11, ahead of another sophomore in the form of 2017 Rookie of the Year Ayumu Sasaki (Petronas Sprinta Racing). Just behind him was compatriot, rookie and reigning Red Bull Rookies Cup Champion Kazuki Masaki (RBA BOE Skull Rider), by only 0.031, with Andrea Migno (Angel Nieto Team Moto3) even closer in P14. The 2017 Mugello winner was only 0.001 off the Japanese rookie. Livio Loi (Reale Stylobike) completed the fastest fifteen.
The lightweight runners will be back out at Jerez on 12th February for more, with the second Official Test coming sooner than you think!
For full results from Valencia, click here!