Phillip Island, Australia

2018 Phillip Island MotoGP Friday Round Up: The Cost Of A 4pm Start At A Fast Track

Phillip Island is a magnificent circuit. Perched on the edge of the Bass Strait, it is a visceral thrill in a spectacular setting. It is fast, flowing, the very essence of what a race track is supposed to be. But all that glory comes at a price. It is also a dangerous place. When you crash at Phillip Island, then it hurts, and more often than not, it hurts a lot.

Veteran US journalist Dennis Noyes points out that in the 1990s, the FIM commissioned a study into crashes at various tracks. The track with the most crashes, Estoril, had the fewest serious injuries. The track with the fewest crashes was Phillip Island. But it was also the track with the most injuries. The difference? Estoril was the slowest track on the calendar, thanks to a couple of tight turns, while Phillip Island was the fastest. Newton's second law is immutable, and enforced 100% of the time.

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2018 Phillip Island MotoGP FP2 Result: Iannone Fastest As Crutchlow Fractures Ankle

Andrea Iannone ended Friday on top of the timesheets at Phillip Island, punching in a fast lap to take the glory at the end of the day. But the Ecstar Suzuki rider had been quick throughout the session, posting a respectable pace on hard tires.

Danilo Petrucci was second fastest on the Pramac Ducati, just ahead of of this morning's fastest rider Maverick Viñales on the Movstar Yamaha. Andrea Dovizioso was fourth quickest on the factory Ducati, just as he had been in FP1.

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2018 Phillip Island Moto2 Result: Binder Impresses Down Under

South African Brad Binder ended Friday as the fastest Moto2 rider at Phillip Island, on the day that his fellow countryman Kork Ballington was made a MotoGP legend. Marcel Schrotter had to settle for second on Friday afternoon, over a quarter of a second behind Binder, and just ahead of Iker Lecuona, who finished third despite a fast crash at Turn 1.

Championship leader Pecco Bagnaia was fourth quickest, just a fraction slower than Lecuona, and a fraction quicker than his main title rival Miguel Oliveira.

Result:

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2018 Phillip Island Moto3 FP2 Result: Canet Beats Martin And Ramirez

Aron Canet finished the day as the fastest of the Moto3 riders, topping the FP2 session on a much-delayed day at Phillip Island. Championship leader Jorge Martin, who holds a single point advantage over Marco Bezzecchi, was second quickest, just ahead of Marcos Ramirez, while Bezzecchi took fourth, bouncing back from two crashes in the morning.

Result:

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2018 Phillip Island MotoGP FP1 Result: Viñales Edges Pramac Ducatis

Maverick Viñales was fastest of the MotoGP riders, as they got their first session of practice underway at Phillip Island. The Movistar Yamaha rider topped a thankfully dry session, just holding off the joint charges of Jack Miller and Danilo Petrucci on the Pramac Ducatis, both of whom were with a tenth of a second of Viñales. 

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2018 Phillip Island Moto2 FP1 Result: Schrotter Leads Binder

Marcel Schrotter topped the first session of practice for the Moto2 class at Phillip Island, leading Red Bull KTM rider Brad Binder and Mattia Pasini. Phillip Island's notoriously fickle weather played its usual role, holding fair until the end of the session, when rain began to fall.

Result:

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2018 Phillip Island Moto3 FP1 Result: Martin Fastest After Lengthy Delay

Jorge Martin topped the first session of practice for the Moto3 class, when it finally got underway. CIP rider Stefan Nepa dropped oil over roughly half the track, forcing the circuit into a prolonged clean up operation. Nepa was handed a suspension for one session by the FIM Stewards for irresponsible riding, and forced to sit out FP2.

Results:

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2018 Phillip Island MotoGP Preview: Why Phillip Island Is Different, And Why Anyone Can Win There

Race tracks come in all different shapes and sizes, from tight and twisty to wide and sprawling, from slow and ornery to fast and furious. There are boring tracks, adequate tracks, and great tracks. And then there's Phillip Island.

What makes Phillip Island special? A lot of things. Its location, perched on the edge of a cliff overlooking the Bass Strait, with nothing but a couple of hundred kilometers of open water fed by the Antarctic Ocean between it and Tasmania. The layout, virtually unchanged for decades, which hugs the rolling hills of the Island and flows up and down. The speed: there are only really two places you brake, at Honda Corner and at MG, the rest of the time you're either accelerating, or rolling off before carrying momentum through the turns. The corners: sensuous, flowing curves without sharply delineated corners or straight lines. Peter Paul Rubens, not Pablo Picasso. A track drawn with a pencil, not a computer mouse.

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