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Friday sweep for Marquez

Marc Marquez stays fastest during Friday Practice (2) for the inaugural MotoGP of the Americas at Austin, Texas.
MotoGP rookie Marc Marquez finished the opening day of the inaugural MotoGP at Austin, Texas with a half-second advantage over the rest of the field.

After a cool and slippery opening practice, much warmer conditions and improved grip greeted the 26-riders for the afternoon session.

Marquez's morning best was soon broken, with LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl rocketing up the order from ninth to lead the early stages.

The German was then pushed back down the timesheet, but returned to complete an all-RC213V top three behind Marquez and Dani Pedrosa on his final lap.

Marquez slashed 2.7s from his FP1 time but was still several seconds off his best in the private March test, when he was quickest on all three days. Team-mate Pedrosa was 0.554s behind Marquez on Friday, with Bradl 1.142s adrift.

Bradl's late rise came at the expense of Yamaha's world champion and Qatar winner Jorge Lorenzo, who was demoted to fourth (+1.6s). Lorenzo's team-mate Valentino Rossi snatched fifth (+1.7s) from Tech 3 Yamaha's Cal Crutchlow on his final lap.

The Repsol Honda, LCR Honda and Factory Yamaha Teams attended the private test in March, making Crutchlow the top rider to debut on Friday.

After an impressive fifth place - best of the non-testers - in the morning session, Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso pulled off track with a technical problem just before the midway stage in the afternoon. The Italian later returned to retain his top Desmosedici place, in seventh (+2.2s). Alvaro Bautista (Gresini Honda), American Nicky Hayden (Ducati) and local Texan Ben Spies (Ducati) completed the top ten.

Aleix Espargaro rose from 15th in FP1 to resume his usual place at the head of the CRT timesheets, in eleventh, this afternoon. Team-mate Randy de Puniet was kicked off his Aprilia in dramatic fashion on his way to 14th, with PBM's Yonny Hernandez and Tech 3's Bradley Smith between the two Aspar riders.

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99 Crystal Ball. - Unregistered

April 19, 2013 9:35 PM

And people complained when he got Stoners ride.Personally,i cant think of anyone more deserving of it.Would be more than happy to see young Marquez stand on the top step of the podium on Sunday.But its early days yet.

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