MotoGP Testing, Sepang Shakedown | Dani Pedrosa, Pedro Acosta lead way on day one

MotoGP Testing, Sepang Shakedown | Dani Pedrosa, Pedro Acosta lead way on day one

MotoGP pre-season testing for 2024 is officially underway with Dani Pedrosa leading the impressive Pedro Acosta on the opening day of shakedown at the Sepang Circuit in Malaysia.

Three days of official shakedown will precede the first official test that begins on 6 February [Tuesday] with all five manufacturers in action with their respective test riders, plus Acosta, who is allowed an extra day of testing to most on account of his rookie status.

It marks the first track outing for the 2024-specification machinery this year, many of which have already been revealed to publicly in launches.

For now, day one is assigned solely to test riders and rookies, though the new concession rules introduced for 2024 – designed to give those struggling a few extra days of testing to catch up with their rivals – will see Yamaha and Honda field their full factory race representatives from tomorrow [2 February, Friday].

MotoGP stalwart Dani Pedrosa led the way on the first day of three shakedown tests at Sepang

For now, day one belonged to KTM, which locked out positions 1-2-3 across its factory outfit and the sister GasGas Factory Racing Tech 3, the latter of which saw Acosta – the only rookie competing this year – out on track.

Dani Pedrosa set the pace with a 1m 59.233secs lap to top the timesheets. This compares with Pecco Bagnaia’s Malaysian MotoGP pole time from October of 1m 57.591secs.

Only a tenth adrift of his much more experienced stablemate, Acosta showed strongly on the new Red Bull-liveried GasGas machine in second, placing just ahead of the rider he replaces in the Spanish-branded, KTM RC16-equipped team, Pol Espargaro.

Cal Crutchlow will be joined on track by Yamaha racers Fabio Quartararo and Alex Rins on day two

With Pedrosa and Espargaro looking mysterious on a camouflaged RC16 over the course of the day, Honda, Aprilia and Yamaha had new parts to test.

KTM, Honda and Aprilia all raised talking points with re-designed tail-end units, while Lorenzo Savadori was on track with some fresh-looking aero on the RS-GP for Maverick Vinales and Aleix Espargaro to try next week.

Meanwhile, Cal Crutchlow was seen riding an M1 with a more domed front section and less pronounced winged aero, perhaps an indication that the manufacturer is trying more streamlined solutions to improve the straight-line performance of its machinery.

Testing continues on Friday and Saturday, with Honda and Yamaha’s race riders joining the fray – including Luca Marini and Johann Zarco on the Honda and Fabio Quartararo and new team-mate Alex Rins on the Yamaha – as part of their concessions deal that allows more testing.

2024 MotoGP Shakedown Pre-Season Testing – Sepang, Malaysia – Day 1 of 3 Results
Name Nat. Team Motorcycle Lap Time
1 Dani Pedrosa 🇪🇦 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM RC16 1m 59.233
2 Pedro Acosta 🇪🇦 Red Bull GasGas Factory Tech3 KTM RC16 1m 59.385
3 Pol Espargaro 🇪🇦 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM RC16 1m 59.415
4 Stefan Bradl 🇩🇪 HRC Honda RC213V 1m 59.860
5 Michele Pirro 🇮🇹 Ducati Lenovo Team Ducati GP24 2m 00.866
6 Cal Crutchlow 🇬🇧 Yamaha Factory Racing Yamaha M1 2m 01.013
7 Lorenzo Savadori 🇮🇹 Aprilia Racing Aprilia RS-GP 2m 01.799


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *