Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Push On with Testing in Losail
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi were back in action at the Losail International Circuit today, as they continued to look for the ideal balance of their bikes‘ settings. They ended the second day of the Qatar MotoGP Test in 2nd and 19th place respectively and hold 2nd and 14th position in the Combined Day 1-2 rankings.
Viñales entered the track around one-and-a-half hour into the session and showed yesterday's quickest lap wasn‘t a fluke. Despite having low grip due to track conditions, he impressed by setting a fastest lap of 1‘54.650s on lap 33/52 for a temporary first place, before continuing his hunt for the perfect set-up. He headed out a few more times, not calling it quits until around 9.15pm local time, but as the track temperature had cooled down, he wasn‘t able to further improve on his best effort. He completed the second day in second position, just 0.057s from today's top time.
Rossi stuck to a similar schedule as his team-mate. He headed out on track just after 5.35pm local track time and used the early hours, with the best track conditions, working on his race set-up rather than putting in a time-attack. The Italian ranked 19th with a fastest lap of 1'55.795s, set on lap 45/51, 1.202s from today's leader, and is keen on fine-tuning his bike using different methods on Day 3.
The Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team is looking forward to finalising their preseason testing schedule tomorrow on the last day of the Qatar Test, before starting the 2019 MotoGP season on 10 March.
Maverick Viñales, 2nd - 1'54.650
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team
“We were working a little bit on the race pace and honestly I'm quite happy, because I think we made good improvements today. It was important to feel the bike a little bit more, to find a new set-up to go fast. I think that job has been done and I'm quite happy about that. We still have a lot of things to do tomorrow to further improve. I hope to go faster tomorrow, because I think the track today wasn't great. Tomorrow we can hopefully find a bit more grip. At the moment the grip level for me is quite low but we're still there at the front and that's the most important.”
Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team, 19th - 1'55.795
“Today was more difficult. I struggled more, especially with the rear grip. Yesterday we had a base setting, I was not so bad. Today we tried to improve, we tried some different settings, but also some different materials. Unfortunately we didn't improve. It was a difficult day, I was always too slow, so we're not happy. Tomorrow we'll try to follow some other directions, to be more competitive.”
Quartararo Shines in Qatar with Third Fastest Time
The PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team completed the second night of the Qatar Test with Fabio Quartararo in an impressive third position and with his teammate Franco Morbidelli in thirteenth after an exhaustive night of development on their Yamaha YZR-M1 machines. Higher track temperatures tonight allowed the riders to improve on their lap times from yesterday and make the most of the available track time.
Fabio Quartararo was one of just four riders to break the 1’55 mark tonight, the French rookie lapping alone throughout but setting a series of fast laps to finish in the top three. A best time of 1’54:908 came on his 46th lap of a total of 54. Quartararo was already inside the top ten on the opening night and confirmed his impressive form at the Qatar Test, finishing as the top rookie tonight as he worked on both race pace and outright speed.
Franco Morbidelli made a strong start to the evening, improving on his best lap from yesterday within the opening two hours. However his best lap of tonight came quite late, with a 1’55:556 on his 45th effort of 52 leaving him thirteenth overall. The Italian worked through an intense programme of testing alongside Yamaha.
PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team, 3rd - 1'54.908
"It has been a very positive Sunday night for us here at Losail and we have learnt a lot about the bike. We kept up a strong pace on used tyres and also took an important step forward with respect to our time attacks. Tonight was the first time I have left the box thinking, 'I'm going to set a fast lap no matter what,' and I am happy with the lap times we set, especially lapping alone, when I put together three great laps. The objective tomorrow is to complete a longer run to check how the tyres work when they are already worn, and then at the end of the evening we will try another time attack."
PETRONAS Yamaha Sepang Racing Team, 13th - 1'55.556
"Today we took a step forward from yesterday and we have understood some new things. We are still gathering experience with the bike and figuring out how it reacts to certain changes that we make. Looking at the lap times tonight, the pace was good but we can still improve over a single lap on the soft tyre. We have to work out the best way to do that, which is exactly what testing is for."