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MotoGP Australia: Marquez 'Adapting set-up to new tyres is key'

"Bridgestone have gone for the safer tyre and it's really hard, especially on the left side" - Marc Marquez.
Marc Marquez finished the opening day of MotoGP practice in Philip Island second fastest, 0.147s slower than Jorge Lorenzo.

With the newly crowned double world champion completing longer runs than Lorenzo his pace on worn tyres was impressive.

However with today marking the first running of the revised Bridgestone rear tyres and new asymmetric front tyre, the biggest challenge for riders was to get an understanding of how they react.

"The biggest problem for everybody was the rear grip and the rear tyre," said Marquez. "We adapt our set-up from the normal tyres that we've used all season and Bridgestone have changed the tyre for this race. They have gone for the safer tyre and it's really hard, especially on the left side.

"For sure from a riding point of view I would prefer the tyres from last year, but I can understand Bridgestone going with the safer tyre. I spoke to Dani about the winter test [which Marquez missed through injury] and he said that there were some tyres that were better and more consistent but in the end Bridgestone gave us the safest tyre.

"It's the same for everybody so everybody will have to work at 100% to adapt their bike to this tyre."

Finding the balance between rear grip and front grip is always difficult with trade-offs made in the setup as riders and engineers focus on find the best compromise to their setup:

"You concentrate the set-up to try and find the grip from the rear. This morning I struggled a lot with rear grip but this afternoon was better and we improved it but then you lose in some other points. Now the most important thing is the rear grip and trying to concentrate the setup to find the best grip and to understand the tyre and what it needs."

The new asymmetric front tyre sees a softer compound shoulder in use on the tyre, with Bridgestone looking to allow riders to heat up the right side of the tyre easier than would have been the case with the normal tyres.

With Philip Island made up of many long left hand corners there are numerous occasions when the right hand side of the tyre gets cold and with the new tyre the goal is for riders to be able to brake confidently and corner with greater confidence on the right side.

"We tried the asymmetric tyre and it looks like it is working well because on the right side we have the softer compound and on the braking point we have more feeling," said Marquez. "In the end we saw a many crashes because it's a track where you are very fast and with one mistake it's easy to crash. I used the asymmetric tyre for my last two exits this afternoon and it was good. We are lucky that the weather is good and the 32 [extra soft] is an option but the 35 asymmetric tyre is really good."

With the title fight now over, Marquez will be concentrating on a twelfth win of the season on Sunday.

Tagged as: Honda , Marquez

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