MotoGP: Marc Marquez fastest in Friday's practice for Valencia race
Marc Marquez leads the way after the opening day of practice ahead of Sunday's season-ending Valencia MotoGP.
Last Updated: 09/11/13 2:03pm
The Spaniard heads into the concluding race of the world championship season with a 13-point advantage over defending champion Jorge Lorenzo.
The 20-year-old Marquez is hoping to become the youngest-ever winner of the world title but needs to finish no lower than fourth at the Ricardo Tormo circuit.
He had been leading by 43 points with just three races remaining only to be disqualified in Australia where he looked all set to finish in second spot behind his compatriot Lorenzo.
Spaniards posted the three fastest times on home soil on Friday, with Marquez's Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa 0.066 of a second adrift, followed by Lorenzo's Yamaha at 0.158s.
Marquez said afterwards: "The track is nice, without many bumps but even so my feeling with the bike was quite good.
"We still need to make some improvements as I'm not 100% happy but we're going in the right way.
"But it was good to start the most important week of the season with a good feeling."
Lorenzo added: "This afternoon was very windy so it was very difficult to make the same lap time of the morning but we managed to improve it a little bit.
"We adjusted the bike a little electronically and also the suspension. We are quite close to everyone and ready to keep working."
Britain's Cal Crutchlow was fourth - 0.282s behind Marquez - although the Yamaha Tech3 rider did suffer a crash late in the session from which he escaped unhurt.
This will be Crutchlow's final grand prix before departing for Ducati in 2014.
Former champion Valentino Rossi was fifth (0.419 off the pace), while Englishman Bradley Smith registered the eighth quickest time - some 0.764 slower than Marquez.
1 M Marquez (Esp) Honda One minute, 31.220 seconds
2 D Pedrosa (Esp) Honda +0.066s
3 J Lorenzo (Esp) Yamaha +0.158
4 C Crutchlow (Gbr Yamaha +0.282
5 V Rossi (Ita) Yamaha +0.419
6 S Bradl (Ger) Honda +0.638
7 A Bautista (Esp) Honda +0.653
8 B Smith (Gbr) Yamaha +0.764
9 A Dovizioso (Ita) Ducati +1.143
10 N Hayden (USA) Ducati +1.175