Marquez leads Friday MotoGP practice for Czech GP

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MotoGP championship leader Marc Marquez kicked off the Czech Grand Prix weekend at Brno by topping Friday practice for Honda, but still has reservations about his chances in Sunday’s race.

Marquez arrived in the Czech Republic well-rested after dislocating his shoulder during practice for the Austrian Grand Prix last weekend, confident that the injury would not affect his performance.

The two-time world champion showed few signs of letting it bother him, topping FP2 for Honda with a fastest lap of 1:55.840 ahead of Ducati’s Andrea Iannone.

Iannone claimed his maiden MotoGP victory in Austria last weekend, and appears to be in the mix at the front once again at Brno after leading FP1 before finishing second to Marquez in the afternoon. Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo finished third in both sessions.

Despite posting the fastest time of the day, Marquez struggled for pace during his long runs, leaving him with work to do on Saturday morning ahead of qualifying.

“Today wasn’t an easy day, especially in the morning when we started and the feeling wasn’t so good,” Marquez said.

“Then for the afternoon we changed and we made some changes in the electronics and the setup and it was working slightly better.

“We still have to improve. OK, we were first and have the fastest time but with the used tire we must improve a lot.

“It looks like both Yamaha riders are strong here, which is what we already expected – and we’ll see if we can improve our rhythm because especially Iannone on the Ducati is fast, too.”

Qualifying for the Czech Grand Prix takes place on Saturday at Brno.