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Viñales Races to Best MotoGP Result at Mugello


Team Suzuki Press Office – May 31.

Team Suzuki Ecstar’s Maverick Viñales raced to his best result of the season with seventh position at Mugello in Italy today; finishing less-than 24 seconds from the race winner.

This was a positive result from a whole weekend in which the 20-year-old-Spaniard made solid progress, constantly developing his bike set-up and improving his lap-times. He started fast from his ninth place on the grid and immediately began to fight with the pack ahead, which was hard to battle through despite his own pace being faster, but his performance in the race was consistent for the whole 23-laps, allowing him to take position-after-position.

However team-mate Aleix Espargarò suffered with some bad luck: The Spaniard fought back the pain in his right hand for the whole weekend, but finally ended his race in the gravel due to a crash caused by another rider. Luckily his injured hand didn’t suffer any further damage, but his race ended at the very beginning, preventing him from exploiting all the positive work he did over the weekend.

Satoru Terada – Project Leader:

“It is my thought that this has been a very positive weekend for us, despite Aleix’s crash. Both riders have improved a lot during the sessions and they were able to fight with the top riders. Maverick took his best result of the year and our machine was less than 24-seconds from the winner, showing that we are constantly improving. Of course I’m disappointed for Aleix’s crash, he was doing a great job considering his injured hand, but he could have had an even worse result but luckily he didn’t incur any further injury. Being closer-and-closer to the top is something that pays back our efforts and gives us further incentive to do better. Of course we need something more in terms of performance and I’m confident in being even closer to the top if we succeed in introducing yet more performance.”

Maverick Viñales:

“This race is my best result of the season and I can’t help being satisfied. I’m happy not only for the race but also for the entire weekend: I entered Q2 immediately and I constantly improved my feeling and therefore my lap-times. For sure we have found a much better set-up which can give me more confidence and therefore making me faster. The race was pretty tough because I had to pass the middle pack of riders, since we have a certain lack-of-power I need to overtake in the handling part of the track where we are strong, so I need some laps to study my opponent and find the best place where to attempt to overtake. According to this new set-up, if we manage to get some more power, I’m confident we can aim for fifth or sixth: It would be amazing to take a good result next time out in Barcelona in front of my home fans.”

Aleix Espargarò:

“There is nothing good to say: it was the very beginning of the race when I got hit. It’s a pity, Petrucci made a mistake and prevented me to continue my race. I struggled with pain for the whole weekend but we found a good set-up. Also in this morning’s warm-up I felt confident in making more laps with less pain and I was really positive for the race. We’re having some bad luck lately, but I hope this will turn into positive luck in Barcelona in a couple of weeks. I will be at home and I definitely wish for a positive result there, not only for me, but also for the team and the factory who are really supporting me.”

GP of Italy – Final classification:

1. Jorge LORENZO, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – 41’39.173
2. Andrea IANNONE, Ducati Team – +5.563
3. Valentino ROSSI, Movistar Yamaha – +6.661
4. Dani PEDROSA, Repsol Honda Team – +9.978
5. Bradley SMITH, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – +15.284
6. Pol ESPARGARO, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – +15.665
7. Maverick VIÑALES, Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – +23.805
8. Michele PIRRO, Ducati Team – +29.152
9. Danilo PETRUCCI, Octo Pramac Racing – +32.008
10. Yonny HERNANDEZ, Octo Pramac Racing – +34.571
DNF: Aleix ESPARGARO – Not Classified

Riders World Championship (after GP of Italy):

1. Valentino ROSSI, Yamaha – 118
2. Jorge LORENZO, Yamaha – 112
3. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Ducati – 83
4. Andrea IANNONE, Ducati – 81
5. Marc MARQUEZ, Honda – 69
6. Bradley SMITH, Yamaha – 57
7. Cal CRUTCHLOW, Honda – 47
8. Pol ESPARGARO, Yamaha – 45
9. Maverick VIÑALES, Suzuki – 36
10. Danilo PETRUCCI , Ducati – 32
11. Aleix ESPARGARO, Suzuki – 31

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