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Pedrosa, Lorenzo make hot start at sunny Sepang

7 February 2013

After two days of cloudy weather, including rain on Wednesday afternoon, the Malaysian sunshine made an appearance at the start of the final day of the opening 2013 MotoGP test, at Sepang.

The likelihood of high afternoon temperatures means the track could be in its optimum condition for lap times this morning - and both Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa have already beaten the previous best lap of the week.

Pedrosa has been quickest on days one and two, but Yamaha's reigning double champion Lorenzo soon dipped a tenth under the Honda rider's 2m 0.549s Wednesday best.

Lorenzo's reign didn't last long however with Pedrosa then hitting the top with a 2m 0.100s, also on his fourth lap. That beats both the official Sepang race lap record (2m 2.108s) and pole record (2m 0.334s).

However lap times in pre-season testing are often faster than the October race weekend. Retired Repsol Honda rider Casey Stoner recording a 1m 59.607s in the first test last year, although a slower 2m 0.473s was enough for the Australian to lead the second test.

As of 11am, the end of the first hour, the top two remained unchanged, with Cal Crutchlow (+0.634s) and Lorenzo's returning team-mate Valentino Rossi (+0.799s) the only riders within one-second of the top.

Pedrosa's rookie team-mate Marc Marquez, a close third on both previous days, is currently fifth (+1.160s), followed by LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl (+1.226s)

The first Sepang test concludes at 6pm. The second test will then be held from February 26-28, followed by a third and final official test at Jerez from March 23-25.

Yamaha are due to announce today if they will join Honda in attending a private test at the new Austin circuit, in Texas, from March 12-14.


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