Andrea Iannone says his primary focus is to ensure his Suzuki can retain its tyre life to match his practice pace after ending Friday at the top of the timesheet at Phillip Island.

The Italian rider headed Friday’s combined practice times with his final flying lap of 1m 29.131s to see off a late challenge from Pramac Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci having caught the eye at one of his favoured tracks on the MotoGP calendar.

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After rediscovering his impressive pace for Suzuki in a similar manner to last year’s Phillip Island race, Iannone accepts if he’s to avoid a repeat result to 12 months ago, when a late race fade dropped him to an underwhelming sixth place, his target will remain extracting his single-lap speed on a worn tyre with the GSX-RR.

“The feeling with the bike is not so bad, so we have a good speed, so the feeling with the bike is really good,” Iannone said. “In any case, from the mid-corner to the end, especially on the exit of the corner, we need a little improvement.

“We need to control a little bit better the slide and spin on the acceleration point, and for sure it's important we try to maintain the tyres a little bit with higher performance.”

“The most important thing is that we arrive in the last five laps with good speed, not arrive on the limit, like last year. Last year we lost the race because the last five laps, we don't have nothing more, and everybody had one or two tenths more than us, and at the end, finished in front of us. So in any case, this is the priority and we focus on this way.”

 

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