Due to the logistical difficulties of transporting the entire squad from Aragon to Japan in just a few days, Friday’s practice schedule was changed to include only one 75-minute session.
Márquez was unable to complete the race distance during the return to Aragon due to two collisions on the first lap.
Anticipating Mateghi could stop and go to really put the strain on his recovering right arm, Marquez says he now expects to have to slow down in Sunday’s Grand Prix to get to the finish line after an “all-out attack” in the long race . practice on Friday.
“I feel pretty good,” Marquez said after finishing sixth fastest in FP1, just 0.147 seconds behind Ducati. Jack Miller at the top of the standings.
“Today was just one training session of an hour and 15 minutes and tomorrow it looks like it will rain, I went full attack.
“Not like crazy, I just didn’t think about my physical condition.
“I just gave it everything I had and felt it because in the last part of practice I started to feel pain in certain spots.
“But we already imagined and understood before coming here that it would be a very difficult track.
“And today I realized that it will be very difficult to make the race complete and consistent. So maybe in the race distance I will have to slow down a bit to finish well.”
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda Team
Photo: Gold and Goose / Images of motor sports
Both factory Honda riders were fast in Friday practice, with Marquez trailing his team-mate Paul Espargaro in the seventh.
The latter was baffled by how quick he was in his time attack on the soft tyres, given how difficult the year has been for the Honda riders.
But Marquez has a feel for the track’s character, and the extra grip offered by the long practice makes it easy to explain this rise in qualifying pace.
“Easy as always. In practice, in the test in Misano, in Mandalica, in Sepang, with full rubber on the track, good grip, you can use the banking, then the lap time is close,” he said when asked about Espargar’s comments.
“Today’s practice was at 3 p.m. This means that the rubber on the track was half an hour longer.
“In the end, the grip was so high. So once we have a good grip, it’s lap time.
“And especially Paul is struggling a lot with the lack of grip, like in Aragon.
“The problem with this bike is that the lap time depends on the rear grip, because you can’t do anything with the front.
“You have no feedback, you have no information to push the front tire.
“So the explanation is this: it’s a longer practice, more rubber at the end and especially on this race track we don’t use corners. You don’t carry speed in the corners and that’s our weakness this year.”