#SepangShakedown - February 3, 2024 - Photo: MotoGp.com

MotoGP™ is finally back in action as engines started to roar again in Malaysia this week, with newly crowned Moto2™ World Champion and sensation Pedro Acosta getting his 2024 campaign going with a three day-Sepang Shakedown. Sole rookie, he was joined on track by test riders on the first day, and other MotoGP™ riders allowed to test following the new concessions rules shared the track with him from day 2. Three important days of experience were taken before the rest of the class gets their first school day on February 6 at the Sepang Test, for the first three days of official testing of the year.

Day 1: Acosta impresses as he finishes just 0.152 seconds from Dani Pedrosa in the timesheets

Looking fresh in newly revealed Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 colours, the rookie finally reunited with his RC16 after a first positive day in Valencia back in November. The least we can say is that Acosta delivered an impressive first day at school after he finished just 0.152 seconds away from fastest rider Dani Pedrosa with a 1’59.385.  That is 1.894 seconds off the all-time lap record of the Sepang International Circuit, taken by Pecco Bagnaia in qualifying of the 2023 Malaysian Grand Prix just two months ago. Not bad at all for what was only day number 2 on a MotoGP™ bike, young shark!

Day 2: Acosta third fastest on second day as other MotoGP™ riders join the Shakedown

The learning process continued on Friday in hot and humid Sepang as Pedro Acosta continued the work to discover the category, sharing the track with more riders than the past day. Halfway through the day, he had already taken down his fastest lap time to 1’58.531, closing the gap to the circuit’s record (1’57.491). The day was later on interrupted by a quite heavy afternoon rain, and the rookie closed the day third.

Day 3: Pedro Acosta fastest on final day of Shakedown

The rookie continued his efforts for a final day before being joined by the rest of the class next week, and rode at a decent pace as he continued to take his times down, this time with a 1'58.189. A small crash put an end to the morning session, before the afternoon one was again disrupted by a heavy rain. After that, Acosta got his first sensation on a wet track with the MotoGP™ bike. He closed the final day of Sepang Shakedown at the top of the timesheets, 0.066 seconds ahead of Pol Espargaro.

Very positive three days for the young rookie who is slowly but surely finding his marks with his new crew and his GASGAS RC16. Two well deserved rest days are now ahead, before we do it all over again for another three days, but this time, with all the MotoGP™ class.

Day 1
Position: 2nd
Time: 1'59.385
Laps: 45
Day 2
Position: 3rd
Time: 1'58.531
Laps: 42
Day 3
Position: 1st
Time: 1'58.189
Laps: 33
"We spent these three days mainly trying to work on my riding style, trying to understand the tyres in MotoGP, find a bike set up, and we have to be happy with this first test. We did some good fast laps, but we most importantly had a good race pace on the dry. We even got a bit of time in the wet, which is always a bonus. I tried to follow Dani Pedrosa a bit today, and it was not that easy! In the Sepang Test, we will try to follow the lines of the other riders, and understand everything a bit more. Very happy, now I am going to enjoy two days of rest!”

photos: MotoGp.com

Team Manager
"The Sepang Shakedown is a tradition and usually kicks off the MotoGP™ season, and this year it was quite interesting as there were more bikes on track with the new concessions rules, so more references for our rookie. Pedro Acosta and the whole Red Bull GASGAS Tech3 team are really happy with these three days, everything went really well. Pedro could set some decent lap times on the dry, and he got to try a bit the wet too, which is always good to take. We did not turn the bike upside down, we just tried to find a comfortable setting for him, and it worked out well because he did an amazing job. This is just the beginning of the season, but it is a good one, and we are looking forward to the Official IRTA Sepang Test with all riders on track."


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