We had to settle with seeing only one Marquez on the track today in Jerez, but we'll be seeing the other tomorrow. At HRC, the spotlight on Friday was focused exclusively on Alex, since Marc will appear starting from the FP3.
Despite the absence of his brother, the rookie of the premier class worked solo, carrying on his work and finishing on Friday with an 18th time trial in the FP2 ahead of Cal Crutchlow.
“The fact that Marc is present, or not, in the garage doesn't change things much " Alex began. "I'm, in fact, focused on myself and my bike. Marc is definitely the reference point, even if Nakagami was pretty competitive today, so much so that he achieved the best time in the afternoon FP2 with the new tire. He's been very strong on this track in the past, and today he demonstrated that he's fast. I always tend to compare myself to the fastest Honda riders and, consequently, I looked at Takaaki."
Marc will also be present in the HRC garage tomorrow.
“Marc won't be at his best. His conditions will definitely improve from day to day, as it should be but, as you well know, he won't be in tip top shape. Here, in Jerez, he and I share the motorhome. We talk often, but I don't have much more to say about it."
The Spanish rider then summed up Friday's outcome.
“Personally, I'm happy," he commented. "I managed to grow, making some changes to the structure. Obviously, I have to improve in several aspects. One of these is the race pace. I have to say that, compared to seven days ago, the gap between the riders has narrowed and it almost seems like being in the Moto2, with all the riders very close to each other. So I'll try to use that experience to learn and grow quickly during this weekend and the next races, since I'll have more information."
His starting point is 12th place last Sunday in the race.
“Last weekend, I struggled a lot in the corners, especially in sectors 1 and 3. Those are the most demanding for me. I managed to do something more as compared to last weekend, but it's still not enough. Inside of me, I'm aware that a busy weekend awaits us, especially Sunday, since the asphalt will be even hotter. But today I tried to improve my confidence with the bike as much as possible, even if it's not easy due to the climatic conditions."