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Marquez Leads Opening Day of Red Bull Indianapolis GP

Reigning MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez of Spain led the first day of MotoGP practice for the Red Bull Indianapolis GP on Friday, Aug. 8, turning a top lap of 1 minute, 32.882 seconds on his Repsol Honda at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Marquez, 21, has a perfect record in winning the first nine MotoGP World Championship series races this season. A 10th win on Sunday would continue his streak and tie Australian legend Mick Doohan for the most consecutive wins (10) in a season in the modern era.

The winner of three races already in his career at Indianapolis – Moto2 in 2011-12 and MotoGP last year – Marquez seems right at home on the  newly reconfigured 16-turn, 2.591-mile IMS road course that features new pavement on the circuit’s infield section and five modified corners.

“We showed this afternoon that we work well on the new layout and we will be fighting for the victory,” Marquez said. “The end of the course and Turns 2, 3 and 4 feel better. I think the biggest improvement is near the end of the course. Between the morning and afternoon practices, I thought the bike was slightly better in the afternoon.”

Alvaro Bautista of Spain recorded a trap speed of 212.8 mph (342.5 km/h) on his Honda during the second MotoGP practice session today, which is the fastest ever by a motorcycle at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Before today, the previous standard of 209.2 mph (336.7 km/h) was set by Dani Pedrosa in 2013. The speed trap is located just past the start-finish line on the main straightaway.

The winner of the inaugural Red Bull Indianapolis GP and a nine-time world champion, Valentino Rossi of Italy posted the ninth-fastest time of 1:34.535 on the reconfigured IMS road course, and he appreciates the new and improved circuit.

“For me, I like the circuit very much,” Rossi said. “The corners, for me, are a lot faster and a lot more fun. The big step is the asphalt. The surface has very good grip; it’s flat. You can control the bike in a better way. I’m very, very happy about the track because the layout is better. It’s faster and better to ride the bike. But especially the bigger step is the surface. The new asphalt works very, very well. It has a lot more grip. They did a very good job.”

American Colin Edwards, who will retire from MotoGP racing at the end of this season, posted the 16th fastest time of 1:34.994 on his NGM Forward Racing Yamaha.

Dominique Aegerter of Switzerland led Moto2 practice at 1:37.518 on his Technomag carXpert Suter, and Isaac Vinales of Spain paced Moto3 practice at 1:42.507 on his Calvo Team KTM.

The winner of the first of two AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series races last year at IMS, Jeremy McWilliams won the pole for Saturday’s Race 1 with a lap of 1:49.370.

Action on Saturday will begin with an AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series warm up session at 8 a.m., followed by morning practice sessions for Moto3 at 9 a.m., MotoGP at 9:55 a.m. and Moto2 at 10:55 a.m.

Qualifying will begin with Moto3 from 12:35-1:15 p.m., followed by the first MotoGP qualifying session from 2:10-2:25 p.m. and the second session from 2:35-2:50 p.m. Moto2 qualifying will be held from 3:05-3:50 p.m.

The first of two AMA Pro Vance & Hines Series races will begin at 4:20 p.m., with riders competing for 10 laps.


***


2014 Ticket information: To buy reserved and general admission tickets for the Red Bull Indianapolis GP, visit www.ims.com/tickets, call the Indianapolis Motor Speedway ticket office at 317-492-6700 or 800-822-INDY, or visit the ticket office on the first floor of the IMS Administration Building at 4790 W. 16th St. in Indianapolis. Ticket office hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. ET Monday-Friday.

Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are available. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at 866-221-8775 for more information.
 

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Marquez Leads Opening Day of Red Bull Indianapolis GP
 
Marquez Leads Opening Day of Red Bull Indianapolis GP
Reigning MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez of Spain led the first day of MotoGP practice for the Red Bull Indianapolis GP on Friday, Aug. 8, turning a top lap of 1 minute, 32.882 seconds on his Repsol Honda at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
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