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Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team Make Hot Moto2 Debut in Qatar

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team Make Hot Moto2 Debut in Qatar

The Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team had two productive Moto2 sessions at their very first round of the Moto2 World Championship. Rookie riders Manuel Gonzalez and Keminth Kubo finished in 14th and 27th place respectively.

Following their successful winter testing, the Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team were excited to start their Moto2 World Championship. Rookie riders Manuel Gonzalez and Keminth Kubo saw their dream come true as they too made their official debut. They finished in 14th and 27th place in the combined timesheets.

Gonzalez needed little to no time to adapt to the Losail track during FP1, as he had ridden here once before when he was taking part in the WorldSSP300 series in 2019. Still, he impressed when he clocked a 2‘01.233s on lap 12 that put him in provisional sixth place. He then focused on improving his feeling with the bike and ended the session in 14th position, 0.943s from the top.

Manugasss kept the positive momentum going in FP2. The pressure was on with all other riders improving their times, but the Spaniard responded. Saving the best for last, he set a 2‘00.164s on his thirteenth and final lap, to get hold of 14th place also in the FP2 and the combined timesheets, finishing 1.052s from first.

Kubo jumped on his bike eager to continue the positive steps he had made over the winter. His goal for FP1 was to get familiar with the Losail track which was completely new to him. He put in 16 laps, setting his fastest time on lap 13. His 2‘02.985s earned him 27th place, 2.695s from first.

The Thai continued to work diligently during the slightly cooler late afternoon session. He put in another 14 laps. As the temperatures got lower, the pace heated up. Kubo too was able to improve on his FP1 lap time, posting a 2‘01.747s. He ended the FP2 session again in 27th place, 2.635s from first.

Gelete Nieto

Sports Director

"We are finally in Qatar, we're all very happy to be here for the first race of the season. I‘m quite happy because both sides of the garage found the right way to work in. Of course, we need to fix some points but I‘m confident we are doing well. Manu‘s position today is incredible, and we are all very enthusiastic but we need to remember that he is still a young rider and needs to gain experience on this bike. Still, I'm very proud, he did a great job! Kubo is gaining confidence with the bike and the track. At the end of the day, he felt a bit of pain in his hand. That‘s because he‘s adapting to the new riding style. The most important thing for us is that he feels good, and it seems to be that way."

Gelete Nieto
Manuel Gonzalez - P14 (2'00.164)

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team

"It has been a very positive day. We changed the bike a lot after the Portimao test, and I feel fast. I‘m inside the top 14, and it‘s a great result for us. At the moment I‘m inside Q2, and tomorrow I‘m sure we can be even faster. We will keep working on the bike, trying to improve some aspects of the setting. I‘m really happy because I‘m fast, I have a good feeling, and I‘m back at this incredible track."

Manuel Gonzalez
Keminth Kubo - P27 (2'01.747)

Yamaha VR46 Master Camp Team

"Today was a bit hot. During FP1, I tried to ride as many laps as I could because I needed to learn the track. Considering it was my first practice here, I'm quite satisfied. During FP2, I tried to improve on my FP1 performance. The result is not bad. I'm happy because I made some steps with the bike. Let‘s see tomorrow what I can do in FP3 and qualifying. I‘ll keep working with my team, and I will do my best."

Keminth Kubo