Jorge Lorenzo fastest on second day in Malaysia

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Jorge Lorenzo closed the second day of MotoGP testing at the Sepang track in Malaysia on top of the timesheets.

The factory Yamaha rider, who was third fastest yesterday, put his new 1000cc Yamaha YZR-M1 on top of the leaderboard with a best pace of 1.59.963.

Lorenzo was almost 0.6s faster than his best pace on day one and his fastest time was the only sub two-minute lap during the entire second day, with a leaner and fitter Lorenzo denying Andrea Dovizioso first position by just 0.052s.

Lorenzo has shed around five kilos with a punishing winter training regime that has dropped his weight to its lowest since he moved to MotoGP back in 2008.

And ahead of this week’s three-day Sepang showdown he said that he was fitter than any other time in his career.

His preparations served him well today, with his 1.59.963 lap just over 0.7s clear of Movistar Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi, who dropped from second yesterday to sixth.

Dovizioso took second by just over 0.1s from reigning world champion Marc Marquez, who was third fastest with a personal best of 2.00.146.

That put him one place ahead of Repsol Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa, who was marginally quicker than Ducati rival Andrea Iannone to secure fourth.

Rossi completed the top six to edge out Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider Pol Espargaro, who took seventh despite a small front-end crash at Turn 9 with exactly one hour of track time remaining at 5pm local time.

Cal Crutchlow was eighth and just over a second off Lorenzo’s best pace. The British rider was happy with his improved his speed and consistency, but he too suffered a low speed crash at Turn 14 earlier in the day.

Bradley Smith was ninth and Aleix Espargaro climbed into the top 10 on the new Suzuki GSX-RR. He cut the gap to the top spot by 0.6s today, while rookie teammate Maverick Vinales also made an impressive improvement to finish 15th with a quickest pace of 2.01.916.

That put Vinales just one place behind Scott Redding, who spent the day continuing to adapt to the factory RC213V he will race for Marc VDS Racing in 2015.

Nicky Hayden was once again the fastest production Honda RC213V-RS in 19th, while Eugene Laverty improved to a 2.03.129 to finish 24th.

Aussie rookie Jack Miller had his toughest day in MotoGP so far, as the 2014 Moto3 runner—up slipped down the order to 23rd.

The CWM LCR Honda rider set a best time of 2.03.083 but suffered his first MotoGP crash this morning when he fell unhurt at Turn 5.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt