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Sixth Place for Rins at Inaugural Thai Grand Prix

Team Suzuki Press Office – October 7.

Alex Rins: 6th (+ 3.023)
Andrea Iannone: 11th (+ 15.488)

• Rins sticks close to lead group for 6th place.
• Iannone keeps hold of 11th spot in second group.
• A good first experience in Thailand for the team.

The first ever MotoGP race at Chang International Circuit in Buriram was an intense one dominated by fierce heat and tricky tyre choices.

When the lights went out in front of the huge crowd made up of 100,245 passionate fans, Andrea Iannone and Alex Rins were expecting a difficult 26 lap race. But despite an unlucky launch off the line for the Italian, both riders quickly slotted into the Top 10. Iannone worked well to mix it up with the second group but he struggled a little with tyre wear as the race went on, taking 11th place at the line. Rins was able to place himself on the back of the lead group and consistently work his way to higher positions. With less than 10 laps to go he had put himself in an excellent 5th, a position he held until the final lap. The young Spaniard therefore finished in 6th place, collecting another important experience in MotoGP racing.

Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager
“After a very positive race in Aragon, I have to say this race was slightly disappointing. Alex was able to get within the top group, and despite his start position not being good, his pace was good. Finally he lost 5th place on the last lap and that was a pity, but he did well. Andrea didn’t get a very good start and lost some positions, and with this race being a very tight one and everybody so close on times, it was very difficult to overtake. Andrea’s pace this weekend has been very good but unfortunately we couldn’t turn it into a great result. The next round is Motegi, our home race, so we’ll check the data from here and try to come back stronger there.”

Davide Brivio – Team Manager
“As we expected, it was quite a tough race and Alex managed it well. But unfortunately I think we paid the price with our starting position because he had to push harder than the others at the beginning of the race, so at the end of the race his tyres were more stressed. But he took a Top 6 with good overtaking maneuvers and good recovery from grid and clever tyre management despite having to push from the start. Andrea struggled more and he also had to stress the tyres due to a difficult start, so by the end he had less capability to fight and stay close to the front and he finished in 11th. We knew it would be a difficult race and we’ve come out of it OK, so we look forward to Japan and hope to continue our positive trend.”

Alex Rins
“I pushed a lot from the beginning to try and reduce the gap to the front group and I lost a lot of time fighting with the other riders so I stressed a lot the tyre because I was pushing hard. Towards the end of the race I knew I needed to settle down and I realised I could take 5th or 6th which was not so bad. In the end I just lost the 5th place but it was not so bad and I’m quite happy. Things are going in a good way and we head to Japan next, which is a positive place for me and for the team.”

Andrea Iannone
“I had a really bad start so I had to recover a lot as I lost many positions on the first few laps. This was really unfortunate because I had good pace but it was difficult after the start. In any case, I managed to get into the second group but it was really hard for me to overtake the other riders, especially on the braking zones. We look forward to going to Japan, it’s difficult to predict what will happen there, but usually it’s a positive track for us. We have speed and that is the most important thing.”

GP of Thailand – Race Classification:
1. Marc MARQUEZ Repsol Honda Team 39’55.722
2. Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati Team +0.115
3. Maverick VIÑALES Movistar Yamaha MotoGP +0.270
4. Valentino ROSSI Movistar Yamaha MotoGP +1.564
5. Johann ZARCO Monster Yamaha Tech 3 +2.747
6. Alex RINS Team SUZUKI ECSTAR +3.023
7. Cal CRUTCHLOW LCR Honda CASTROL +6.520
8. Alvaro BAUTISTA Angel Nieto Team +6.691
9. Danilo PETRUCCI Alma Pramac Racing +9.944
10. Jack MILLER Alma Pramac Racing +11.077
11. Andrea IANNONE Team SUZUKI ECSTAR +15.488
12. Hafizh SYAHRIN Monster Yamaha Tech 3 +17.691
13. Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +21.413
14. Franco MORBIDELLI EG 0,0 Marc VDS +22.802
15. Bradley SMITH Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +23.628
16. Scott REDDING Aprilia Racing Team Gresini +23.804
17. Karel ABRAHAM Angel Nieto Team +32.507
18. Xavier SIMEON Reale Avintia Racing +37.216
19. Jordi TORRES Reale Avintia Racing +39.204
20. Thomas LUTHI EG 0,0 Marc VDS +39.421
21. Pol ESPARGARO Red Bull KTM Factory Racing +53.388
22. Takaaki NAKAGAMI LCR Honda IDEMITSU 2 Laps
Not Classified
26 Dani PEDROSA Repsol Honda Team

MotoGP World Standings 2018:
1. Marc MARQUEZ Honda 271
2. Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 194
3. Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 172
4. Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 146
5. Jorge LORENZO Ducati 130
6. Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 128
7. Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 126
8. Johann ZARCO Yamaha 123
9. Andrea IANNONE Suzuki 113
10. Alex RINS Suzuki 102

11. Dani PEDROSA Honda 87
12. Jack MILLER Ducati 74
13. Alvaro BAUTISTA Ducati 72
14. Tito RABAT Ducati 35
15. Franco MORBIDELLI Honda 33
16. Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 32
17. Pol ESPARGARO KTM 32
18. Hafizh SYAHRIN Yamaha 28
19. Bradley SMITH KTM 19
20. Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 18
21. Scott REDDING Aprilia 12
22. Mika KALLIO KTM 6
23. Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 5
24. Michele PIRRO Ducati 1
25. Thomas LUTHI Honda
26. Stefan BRADL Honda
27. Xavier SIMEON Ducati
28. Jordi TORRES Ducati
29. Sylvain GUINTOLI Suzuki
30. Christophe PONSSON Ducati