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Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team Make Steps on Spanish GP Saturday

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team Make Steps on Spanish GP Saturday

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team’s Manuel Gonzalez and Stefano Manzi (replacing Keminth Kubo, who was diagnosed with costochondritis yesterday) made progress on the Gran Premio de España Saturday. Gonzalez made a good step, allowing him to put in a bid for a top-four position in Q1. He ultimately finished 6th, taking 20th place on the grid. Manzi delivered a solid performance. Having had only the 40-minute FP3 session to prepare himself for qualifying, he secured 26th place on the grid.

The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team made a step on qualifying day at the Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto. Manuel Gonzalez and Stefano Manzi (the Italian rider replacing Keminth Kubo, who was diagnosed with costochondritis yesterday) took part in Q1 and secured 20th and 26th place on the grid respectively.

Gonzalez started the 15-minute Q1 session knowing it would be a challenge to get into the top four, but that wasn’t going to prevent him from trying. Early on, the Spanish talent showed that the work he and his crew had done so far this weekend is paying off. He slotted into sixth place in the first stages of the session and held the position whilst upping his pace. His best time, a 1’41.950s on lap 5/9, earned him sixth in Q1 and 20th place on the grid, but was close to the top-10 times of Q2.

Manzi had only the 40 minutes of the FP3 session to get acquainted with the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team bike before he was put to the test in the Q1 session. The Italian’s objective for today was to get comfortable on the bike and improve his feeling for tomorrow’s race. He clocked a promising 1’42.634s on lap 4/9, that put him in 12th position in the Q1 timesheets and in 26th place for tomorrow’s start to his first Moto2 Grand Prix of the 2022 season.

Manuel Gonzalez: P20 - 1'41.950

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team

I have mixed feelings about today: on the one hand I’m happy, but on the other hand, starting from P20 tomorrow is never a good position. It’s far down the grid, so I’m a bit disappointed. But my feelings with the bike were great. I’m learning how to push to the limit. I feel really good also with the track. If I had the chance to enter Q2, I could have done a top 10 because my lap time was really good, 0.6s from first - it’s the closest time we did so far. Tomorrow we have to fight, try to make a good start and a good first lap to try to finish with some more points again.

Stefano Manzi: P26 - 1'42.634

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team

I’m really happy about today! I once again would like to thank Yamaha and the VR46 Riders Academy for this opportunity. It’s not been easy to get here in time from Italy in a rush. I arrived last night, and I didn’t get much sleep. But I was feeling good during the first laps. I was confident with the bike and with the work the team was doing. During the afternoon we did a lot of laps, and we started working on some changes in order to try to adapt it to my riding style. We improved compared to this morning, and we will make more kilometres tomorrow during Warm Up and during the race.

Gelete Nieto - Sports Director

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team

It went quite well with Manu today. He likes the bike a lot, we changed it a lot from the FP1 on and that’s important. As I always say, 'step by step we can go far'. It’s a pity because at the end of Q1 we missed out on entering Q2 by less than a tenth, so tomorrow he will be 20th on the grid. We know we can do a good race even if we start from a bit behind, but during the race you’ll never know what can happen. Even for an experienced rider like Manzi, today couldn’t have been easy, because he missed all of yesterday's practice sessions. Still, he felt immediately good with the bike. It seemed that he knew it! He changed something for Q1 and he liked it. He wants to make some more changes, and I’m very happy because he was quite fast and was working well with the team.