Suzuki MotoGP rider Maverick Viñales has left Misano and the San Marino Grand Prix satisfied with his fifth place in Sunday’s race, after making progress in the hot conditions that have dogged the squad all season so far.
The Spaniard was able to send most of the race running a strong enough pace to dice with Andrea Dovizioso at Ducati’s test track, and even a penalty for exceeding track limits wasn’t enough to slow him down significantly.
“I am really satisfied with this race, and although I couldn’t get on the podium, fifth place is a really good result if we consider our starting points; this was one of the hardest tracks for our machine and here it was really hot - a condition in which we have always been struggling recently.
“Finishing in fifth place, after winning a fierce battle, is a positive result. During the race I felt really confident with the front, but the rear had no grip at all, so I had to push really hard and adapt my riding style. I managed to keep with the leading group at the beginning but then I had to go back. At around half-race distance I felt I could push more and my lap-times became faster again.
“I had to give-up one position for having exceeded the track limit but recovered immediately. I must say thank you to my team, they did an incredible job and it’s really a relief to be aware that now we are getting competitive also in hot conditions.”
However, it was a less successful race for teammate Aleix Espargaró, after losing the weekend-long struggle with front grip and crashing out of the race.
“The crash was a little one, but exactly the same as the other two I had; three crashes in a weekend is something rare and I’m disappointed with this. I struggled a lot with the front grip for the whole weekend, then in the race I had to push a lot and the problem generated the crash. Such a bad feeling I had in the race is not normal, maybe we can investigate some possible causes, but also the truth is that probably the tyre choice was a mistake.
“It’s always easy to comment when the game is over, but looking at the winner, we should have made a completely different choice. It’s a mistake, once again I struggled to find a good direction to work, we cannot work harder than what we are doing so be should probably find a better way to work in order to make better choices and be more competitive.”
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