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.”