Wild Card Lucas Mahias leads Michael van der Mark and Kenan Sofuoglu.
With five manufacturers in the top six, Sylvain Guintoli is quickest in France.
Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams after the first day of practice at Magny-Cours:
MotoAmerica, the organization which replaces the DMG in running the US AMA series, has given their first peek into the future, by announcing the rules package. Though still not finalized, the package does give a very clear indication of MotoAmerica and KRAVE's thinking, and the direction they wish to steer motorcycle racing in America in.
Four classes have been announced, with two more currently being weighed. The series will feature two superbike classes, Superbike and Superstock 1000, which will run concurrently. There will also be two middleweight classes, Supersport and Superstock 600, which replace Daytona Sportbike and the Supersport series.
For the moment, the four classes will be very similar to the classes they replace, with the exception of Superstock 1000, which will be run along the same lines as the FIM Superstock 1000. But MotoAmerica make it very clear in their press release that the eventual goal is to bring the Superbike, Supersport and Superstock 600 rules used at the world championship level, with the aim of bringing more American talent to world championship racing.
Davide Giugliano sets the first 1'37 of the meeting, ahead of Eugene Laverty and Sylvain Guintoli.
Crowned champion Michael van der Mark continues to be the quickest rider at Magny-Cours. Wild card Lucas Mahias was again third-quickest, only behind Van der Mark and Roberto Tamburini this session.
Sylvain Guintoli pips Tom Sykes in front of his home crowd.
Michael van der Mark opened the weekend ahead of Jack Kennedy and French wild card Lucas Mahais.
Press release previews from the World Superbike organizers and teams ahead of this weekend's penultimate round at Magny-Cours:
Another piece of the MotoGP puzzle has been fixed into place. It was widely known that Eugene Laverty would be riding a production Honda for the Drive M7 Aspar team in MotoGP next year, but official confirmation of the fact only came today. Laverty is to line up alongside Nicky Hayden aboard the uprated production Honda, now called the RC213V-RS, taking the place of Hiroshi Aoyama.
Laverty's path into the Aspar team was far from straightforward. The Irishman had been in talks with Aspar, who at the time were also talking to replacement rider Leon Camier and Frenchman Loris Baz. Aspar then signed a precontract with both Baz and Laverty, subject to the condition that Aspar could not secure the services of Scott Redding. Once the deadline for Redding's signature passed, Aspar found themselves with two contracts on their hands. They quickly moved to break the contract with Baz, declaring that they had not known that the Frenchman was 1.92m, despite the fact that Baz' height is a matter of public knowledge. That left Laverty in line to take the seat at Aspar, despite having offers from Ducati to ride at Pramac, and having had talks with Forward Yamaha.
While the rider line up for the MotoGP is very near to being settled, there are still a lot of things up in the air in the Moto3 class. Though the teams were all required to submit their official entries, and pay a deposit to secure their rides at Aragon, there were only a few official announcements by the end of the weekend. Enough, however, to make a rundown of the latest developments for the 2013 season.
Though this year's title protagonists will be moving on to better things - Jack Miller to MotoGP, Alex Marquez and Alex Rins to Moto2 - the Red Bull KTM and Estrella Galicia teams are likely to be at the forefront in 2015 as well. With the Red Bull KTM team having signed Miguel Oliveira and Brad Binder, they are the team which looks most likely to be fighting for the title, against Team Sky VR46's Romano Fenati. The Estrella Galicia team will have a couple of rookies in Fabio Quartararo and Maria Herrera, while Jorge Navarro will have learned a great deal during his first half season in Moto3 replacing Livio Loi.
As usual, Bridgestone issued a post-race debrief press release on Wednesday, giving their view of how the weekend went. The Motorland Aragon circuit saw some of the coldest temperatures all year, as well as heavy rain on Sunday. In the press release, Shinji Aoki discusses the challenges faced by Bridgestone at the Aragon track:
Aragon MotoGP™ debrief with Shinji Aoki
Wednesday, October 1 2014
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium & Hard; Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo secured his first win of the 2014 MotoGP™ season in a chaotic Aragon Grand Prix which started dry, yet finished in soaking wet conditions after a heavy downpour late in the race. Lorenzo won ahead of NGM Forward Racing’s Aleix Espargaro, who took second place for his first ever MotoGP™ rostrum, and Ducati Team’s Cal Crutchlow, who took third place for his first podium with the Italian team.
MotoMatters.com is delighted to feature the work of iconic MotoGP writer Mat Oxley. Oxley is a former racer, TT winner and highly respected author of biographies of world champions Mick Doohan and Valentino Rossi, and currently writes for Motor Sport Magazine, where he is MotoGP correspondent. We are featuring sections from Oxley's blogs, which are posted in full on the Motor Sport Magazine website.
“The difference between idiot and hero is very small”
Decisions, decisions, decisions… racers make tens of thousands of them every race, and each and every one of them can make the difference between victory and defeat, even between life and death.
With hindsight, there’s no doubt that Marc Márquez made the wrong decision to stay out on slicks as the rain in Spain swept across the Aragon plain on Sunday. But what if he hadn’t crashed and had crossed the line in front of his rivals equipped with rain tyres? We would be in awe of his ability to find grip where no else can. The headlines, no doubt, would’ve suggested he can walk on water.
One of the last few pieces of the rider puzzle for 2015 has slotted into place. Today, Pramac Racing confirmed that they have reached agreement with Danilo Petrucci to race for them for the next two seasons. Petrucci will race the Desmosedici alongside Yonny Hernandez in 2015 and 2016.
The move had been widely expected, with Pramac keen to have at least one Italian rider in the team for the sake of their sponsors. Andrea Iannone had been a useful asset for the team, and they needed an Italian to replace him. The other riders linked to that ride - Loris Baz and Eugene Laverty - were less attractive to Pramac's Italian sponsors.
With the second seat at Pramac taken, that leaves just four seats unfilled. Eugene Laverty is believed to have signed to take the seat at Aspar Honda alongside Nicky Hayden, while Loris Baz is close to a deal with Forward Racing to race the Open Yamaha alongside Stefan Bradl. Only the second seat at Gresini Aprilia, and the second slot at Avintia, aboard the Open Ducati remain unfilled.
After the official announcement that Suzuki will be returning to MotoGP, made at the Intermot in Cologne today, the Suzuki press office issued the following press release, containing a question and answer session with Suzuki MotoGP team boss Davide Brivio:
FIVE MINUTES WITH SUZUKI MOTOGP'S DAVIDE BRIVIO
Team Suzuki Press Office – September 30.
Suzuki has unveiled its plans for MotoGP at the Intermot show in Cologne, Germany today, where its 2015 model line-up was revealed to the world’s press.
The Japanese firm has been absent from the Blue Riband race series since 2012, but is back with an all-new bike, a new Team Manager in Davide Brivio and two new riders: Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Vinales.
We spoke to David Brivio at Cologne and asked him about his involvement with the new project.
How long have you been working with the Suzuki MotoGP team?
“Since the beginning, in April 2013 I joined Suzuki and carried on the preparation.”