Vinales Spurts to Second Place on Day One in Misano2017-09-09 18:34
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP's Maverick Viñales showed an encouraging pace on a perfectly sunny first day at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli. He completed 39 laps overall in the first two free practice sessions to find a good set-up for his YZR-M1 ahead of Sunday's Tribul Mastercard GP S.Marino e Riviera di Rimini. The Spaniard finished the day in second place after pushing hard in a hot ’mini shoot-out‘ at the end of FP2.
Viñales is the sole representative of the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team this weekend. With Valentino Rossi recovering from injury, the Italian's side of the garage was decked out with ’get well soon‘ messages and had his two bikes on display.
Viñales, however, shouldered the responsibility with confidence. The 22-year-old made a good start this morning, though suffering from a slight lack of grip, and was quick to find a solid speed around the Misano circuit. He used the 45 minutes of the first free practice to find a good base set-up and took eighth place with a 1'34.592s best lap, 1.036s from first.
The Factory Yamaha rider continued to chip off tenths in various sectors of the track in the afternoon, as he fine-tuned his bike's setting. Feeling comfortable, he completed a few long runs on used tyres before it was time to join the rest of the MotoGP riders in a provisional ’time-attack‘, as they all aimed for a place inside the top-10 of the combined timesheets. Eager to show his speed, Viñales made a solid improvement over the two sessions when he took more than a second off his morning time. He set a 1'33.236s lap at the end of the FP2 and finished the day in second place in the combined standings, missing out on first position by just 0.005s.
Today is a bit strange for us, as we are starting the race weekend with just one rider. Nevertheless, we made a positive start to the San Marino GP in the first two practice sessions. This morning, though Maverick was able to find a good pace, we suffered a bit from a lack of grip due to the condition of the track. In the afternoon, the condition improved, so we continued to work on the fine-tuning of the bike and Maverick was able to put in a lot of laps with used tyres to prepare for the race, and his feeling was good. He put in a hot lap at the end of the FP2 session on a new tyre and set the second fastest time, missing out on first place by just 0.005s. This shows we have the speed, but we think we can better the pace even further. There's still a lot of time for improvements and we are confident that we can make another step tomorrow.
I feel good, because I did many laps on the tyres and that was the work I wanted to do, especially during FP2, getting the tyres to work for the full amount of laps of the race. Honestly, I‘m quite surprised that the rhythm was really good and I‘m quite happy about how the bike was working. Still we have to improve, because the lap times weren‘t as fast as we thought we could do. I‘m using the 2018 prototype chassis, because already when I tested in Misano, I felt good and more comfortable on the bike, which is really important for me, as a rider, to be 'in the flow‘. I will continue to use it until the end of the season, because it has been an improvement.
Source: Yamaha Motor Racing
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