A seventh Honda rider took to the track in today’s MotoGP free practice sessions at Brno, with encouraging results in view of Sunday’s Czech Grand Prix.

HRC MotoGP test rider Stefan Bradl, who recently replaced fellow Honda rider Franco Morbidelli at the German GP (16th) and is racing as an HRC wildcard at Brno, set an impressive eighth-fastest time in the morning’s first practice session in 1’57.291, just over six tenths from the top.

The 2011 Moto 2 World Champion wasn’t able to improve on that mark when the higher temperatures of the afternoon affected the track’s grip, and he ended the day in 16th place (1.315″ off the top in the combined classification). Still, he is fully focused in sorting things out tomorrow in order to earn a good starting position for Sunday.

Stefan Bradl

“All in all, it was a good day for us. This morning in particular I immediately felt good on the bike and was able to do some good lap times. It was nice to find myself in a top-10 position. This afternoon our main target was working on used tyres, but we struggled a bit because the grip level in the hot temperatures was very low. We tried a couple of setup adjustments that didn’t work out as we expected. We’ll work on our data to make some changes, as we aim to be as fast on used tyres in high temperatures as we were in the fresher morning conditions.”