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Team Suzuki Ecstar Makes Adjustments at Qatar

Team Suzuki Press Office – March 23.

Andrea Iannone: P13, 1’56.027
Alex Rins: P18,1’56.502

Team SUZUKI ECSTAR riders Andrea Iannone and Alex Rins made their 2017 MotoGP™ racing debut in Suzuki colours under the floodlights at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar tonight with a new aerodynamic fairing on their GSX-RRs, further proving the machine’s evolution; and something the team will further-evaluate in the coming days.

Iannone began his work from the same place he left-off less than two weeks ago, with the new set-up at the final test. This allowed him to get back the feeling of improvement he had, but he wasn’t able to make an effective finish that would have allowed him to improve his lap-time. His focus now remains on finding a good overall feel with the bike that will allow him to better fulfil his potential before the race.

Rins took to his first session in the main class in his usual method; getting as much information as possible, without concentrating too much on the time, as it’s more important for him to gain experience and to have data to analyse.

Davide Brivio – Team Manager:

“Finally, we have started the first race weekend of the season, but still we have some work to do in order to try to give the riders a better feel for the bike. Especially Andrea, who doesn’t feel comfortable with his machine. We have to understand what we can work on to improve his sense of the bike. If we could do this, then he would be able to live up to his potential, which he cannot now do. Alex started his first MotoGP race weekend, and his approach has been the same as it was in the tests; he started quietly, to test and verify settings and feeling, and so he could collect a lot of information which we will analyse and discuss with him in order to see where and how we can help him to improve. It’s the working method we set up with him and we believe it will pay back pretty soon.”

Andrea Iannone:

“At the moment we are struggling and we will need to stay focused and work hard. I really hope we can make some steps forward. I don’t expect a big leap from one session to another, but for sure we have to improve, and at the moment we haven’t found the right direction. There are many positive points about the bike and some others which are negative, but this happens to any bike. So, our problem now is that I cannot really take advantage of the positives. We used the aerodynamic fairing to get some more information, as we couldn’t use it intensively during the test. And, the more data we can collect, the better it is. We still don’t know if we will use it for the race. For the moment, we have to continue working on it and we will decide during the weekend.”

Alex Rins:

“This first day here in Qatar was a little difficult for me. I felt really excited when I started. Although I had no pressure on me and nobody had expectations of my first session, I felt enthusiastic for myself and this probably affected my performance. I need to gain more experience in this as well. Anyway, just one session is not very much for trying out new things or to get a real feel for the bike. We definitely need more time to continue working on it, and tomorrow I’ll give my best to recover my cool head and improve my riding.”

Qatar MotoGP Free Practice 1:

1.Maverick VIÑALES,Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – 1’54.316
2.Marc MARQUEZ,Repsol Honda Team – 1’54.912 +0.596 / 0.596
3.Dani PEDROSA,Repsol Honda Team – 1’55.210 +0.894 / 0.298
4.Jonas FOLGER,Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1’55.587 +1.271 / 0.377
5.Jorge LORENZO,Ducati Team – 1’55.607 +1.291 / 0.020
6.Loris BAZ,RealeAvintia Racing – 1’55.624 +1.308 / 0.017
7.Cal CRUTCHLOW,LCR Honda – 1’55.639 +1.323 / 0.015
8.Johann ZARCO,Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1’55.792+ 1.476 / 0.153
9.Valentino ROSSI,Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – 1’55.799 +1.483 / 0.007
10.Aleix ESPARGARO,Aprilia Racing Team Gresini – 1’55.872 +1.556 / 0.073
11.Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Ducati Team – 1’55.873 +1.557 / 0.001
12.Scott REDDING,OCTO Pramac Racing – 1’56.000 +1.684 / 0.127
13.Andrea IANNONE,Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – 1’56.027 +1.711 / 0.027
14.Alvaro BAUTISTA,Pull&BearAspar Team – 1’56.128 +1.812 / 0.101
15.Karel ABRAHAM,Pull&BearAspar Team – 1’56.399 +2.083 / 0.271
16.Danilo PETRUCCI,OCTO Pramac Racing – 1’56.419 + 2.103 / 0.020
17.Jack MILLER,EG 0,0 Marc VDS – 1’56.453 +2.137 / 0.034
18.Alex RINS,Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – 1’56.502 +2.186 / 0.049
19.Tito RABAT,EG 0,0 Marc VDS – 1’56.725 +2.409 / 0.223
20.Hector BARBERA,RealeAvintia Racing – 1’56.725 +2.409

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