5 months ago
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Day 3 of the Sepang shakedown test has come to an end and it’s Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Pol Espargaro who topped the unofficial lap times. Brother Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) was second fastest while Jorge Lorenzo got our nostalgic juices flowing, the five-time World Champion returning to track action on board a Yamaha.
The Iwata factory’s new test rider completed 46 laps on the final day, finishing just over a second off Espargaro’s pacesetting time – pretty much matching his Repsol Honda qualifying time from the 2019 Malaysian GP. Will we see the number 99 Yamaha at the Official Sepang Test this weekend?
Thanks to Pol Espargaro’s efforts, KTM riders took a clean sweep at the shakedown test, with MotoGP™ Legend and factory test rider Dani Pedrosa quickest on the opening two days. Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) had a positive day too as he returns to the fold following his late 2019 surgery, while Mika Kallio took over testing duties from Pedrosa on the final day.
Over at Aprilia, Aleix Espargaro got his first taste of the 2020 RS-GP after test rider Bradley Smith had taken the new model for an initial two-day spin on Sunday and Monday. Aleix’s thoughts? Seemingly the Spaniard was extremely pleased with his 25 laps onboard the new bike – promising times ahead for Aprilia.
Rookies Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing) and Iker Lecuona (Red Bull KTM Tech 3) continued their adaptation to the premier class, the KTM duo will now have their eyes firmly set on the Official Test which begins on Friday 7th. Alex Marquez was absent on Day 3, the reigning Moto2™ World Champion was in Jakarta, Indonesia, for the 2020 Repsol Honda Team launch.
Factory test riders Michele Pirro (Ducati Team) and Sylvain Guintoli (Team Suzuki Ecstar) completed their third-straight day of testing at Sepang. The Italian and Frenchman will go again in a few days as they continue to put in the work for Ducati and Suzuki, who both have title ambitions in 2020.
Next up: the Official 2020 Sepang Test. The excitement now really builds as we await every rider hitting the Sepang International Circuit on 7-9 February.