Ducati impress again as Marc Marquez makes his much-anticipated debut
Whether it was Marc Marquez jumping aboard the Ducati for the first time, Marco Bezzecchi leading their line-up with third of Francesco Bagnaia feeling confident with the new 2024 package, the Italian manufacturer was competitive everywhere you looked.
- Morbidelli calls first day with Ducati ‘smooth, was important to meet the bike’
- Bagnaia: “I can be happy, Ducati can be happy” with 2024 bike
Marquez threatened to top the test on his Ducati debut, while the likes of Bagnaia, Jorge Martin and Bezzecchi were very fast throughout the day.
The 2023 bike, which will be ridden by both Marquez brothers, Bezzecchi and Di Giannantonio, could start the 2024 campaign as the bike to beat given its results and the data it generated throughout this season.
But that shouldn’t stop Bagnaia and Martin from being right in the mix from round one.
Vinales leads Aprilia’s charge but can he sustain it?
Maverick Vinales was once again fastest in a MotoGP test, something he’s known for achieving before struggling to convert his pre-season form into wins.
But Vinales was very close to victory on occasion in 2023, and the speed he showed at Valencia was very impressive.
Vinales was Aprilia’s most consistent rider during the last few races of 2023 and could be the rider they hang their hat on for a title charge next season.
Vinales will also be in his third full season with the team so fighting for victories will be the minimum expectation.
Yamaha and Honda made small steps forward but was it enough to convince their riders?
Both of the Japanese manufacturers seemed to enjoy a decent test in Valencia, however, Fabio Quartararo and Joan Mir were left wanting a bit more from their M1 and RC213V bikes, respectively.
Luca Marini was strong on his Repsol Honda debut and seemed to gel with his new package, something that was also true for Alex Rins although the Spaniard struggled to move up the order.
There were a raft of new parts on show from both manufacturers, but it appears as though more is needed to beat the likes of Ducati, Aprilia and KTM.
Pedro Acosta is a star in the making
Something that is plain obvious at this stage, Acosta looks on course to become a very good MotoGP rider.
The young Spaniard wasted no time getting comfortable with his KTM bike, which he demonstrated by pulling off a veteran move, which was to slide the rear of his Rc16 around the famous turn 13.
Acosta also got stronger with each stint and was able to finish the test less than 1.3 seconds off Vinales’ leading time.
The Moto2 world champion did have a small slip off during the final hour, which was also true for the experienced Brad Binder, who had just jumped up to second with a very impressive time late on.