Can the Motogp aliens deliver a sub two-minute lap?
This year’s OCTO British Grand Prix on September 1-4 at Silverstone could witness the first ever sub two-minute lap of the 3.67-mile Northamptonshire circuit by a Motogp machine. Four-times champion Marc Marquez has recorded the fastest lap so far, a 2m 00.234s on his way to pole position last year at Silverstone.
Former 500cc Grand Prix star Niall Mackenzie believes the sub two-minute lap could well be achieved this year, he said: “I think this year’s Yamaha has improved top speed, which is obviously important at Silverstone, and they’ve got the best out of the Michelins so far.
“Honda seemed to struggle earlier in the season with corner entry and front feel but this has since improved. And I always think Dani Pedrosa is the true level of the Honda as Marc Marquez’s exceptional talent can sometimes mask machine or set-up issues. As a result of that you never know what Marc can achieve over a single lap.
“Corner exits onto the fast straights are important. Machine set-up needs to focus on mid corner and exit grip so good electronics and chassis settings are crucial,” says Mackenzie.
“Turn one at Copse is important as it builds towards the very fast left and rights of Maggotts and Becketts. Good momentum out of Chapel and onto the Hangar Straight is required then the next decent chunk of time can be gained by getting the perfect run through the kink and onto Wellington Straight.
“In the final corner at Woodcote you need stability, good grip and to hold a perfect line to the finish of the lap. And if Lorenzo is on form I reckon he’ll be the man for the first 1m 59s lap.”
Of the top riders’ best laps of Silverstone, Lorenzo is the closest Marquez. See right for the best lap times and those of the British riders.