MGP-1-Alex Rins-20

Team Suzuki Press Office – March 26.

Alex Rins: 5th – 1’53.623 (+ 0.236)
Joan Mir: 11th – 1’53.914 (+ 0.527)

Team Suzuki Ecstar and the MotoGP field took to Losail Circuit in Qatar on Friday for the first practice sessions of the 2021 season.

For FP1 the track conditions were tricky, with ground temperatures reaching 60 degrees Celsius and dust making for low grip. Nevertheless, the riders quickly got to work adjusting their bikes. Joan Mir and Alex Rins finished this session fifth and seventh respectively.

As night fell around the circuit, the pressure was on to find the feeling and set a fast time, with tomorrow’s FP3 likely to be held in less favourable conditions. Both Rins and Mir opted for the soft-soft tyre combination and they got down to business trying to find a rhythm before a slight interruption due to a red flag flown because of debris on the track. After the session restart both Suzuki riders pushed to get their lap times down, and the FP2 session became very competitive.

Rins and Mir dropped their lap times and managed to get into the Top 10. However, as the action hotted up Mir slipped to 11th place – although just half a second from the top – while Rins held onto fifth place.

Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager:

“We have finally started the season after good testing here. Today we worked on settings, and then we tried to set lap times during FP2 because tomorrow’s conditions look tricky. So both our riders concentrated on lap times, and although Joan missed out on the Top 10 he still has good pace. Alex did a great job and he was fifth. So we’re looking forward to tomorrow and hoping for good qualifying.”

Alex Rins:

“Today was a good day, we achieved the target we set, and we did a good lap time. I’ve also improved my time compared with the test here, so I’m satisfied. It seems like qualifying tomorrow will be interesting and the race too, the times are tight with a lot of fast riders! So we’ll continue working hard and trying to improve all the time.”

Joan Mir:

“It was a difficult day and I think missing the last day of testing here has had an impact on our performance because we still had to adjust some things on the bike to become a little more competitive. We were pretty strong on times, but there’s still work to do. The main thing is that we know where we can improve for the coming days.”

BARWA GRAND PRIX OF QATAR – Combined Classification after DAY1:

1. J. MILLER – Ducati Lenovo Team – 01: 53.387
2. F. BAGNAIA – Ducati Lenovo Team – 01: 53.422 +0.035
3. F. QUARTARARO – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP – 01: 53.575 +0.188
4. J. ZARCO – Pramac Racing – 01: 53.586 +0.199
5. A. RINS – Team Suzuki Ecstar – 01: 53.623 +0.236
6. M. VIÑALES – Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP – 01: 53.639 +0.252
7. F. MORBIDELLI – Petronas Yamaha SRT – 01: 53.676 +0.289
8. A. ESPARGARO – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini – 01: 53.727 +0.340
9. V. ROSSI – Petronas Yamaha SRT – 01: 53.874 +0.487
10. P. ESPARGARO – Repsol Honda Team – 01: 53.901 +0.514
11. J. MIR – Team SUZUKI ECSTAR – 01: 53.914 +0.527
12. A. MARQUEZ – LCR Honda CASTROL – 01: 54.115 +0.728
13. J. MARTIN – Pramac Racing – 01: 54.178 +0.791
14. T. NAKAGAMI – LCR Honda IDEMITSU – 01: 54.199 +0.812
15. E. BASTIANINI – Esponsorama Racing – 01: 54.228 +0.841
16. B. BINDER – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing – 01: 54.371 +0.984
17. L. MARINI – SKY VR46 Esponsorama – 01: 54.432 +1.045
18. S. BRADL – Repsol Honda Team – 01: 54.634 +1.247
19. M. OLIVEIRA – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing – 01: 54.756 +1.369
20. D. PETRUCCI – Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing – 01: 54.774 +1.387
21. I. LECUONA – Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing – 01: 55.098 +1.711
22. L. SAVADORI – Aprilia Racing Team Gresini – 01: 55.674 +2.287

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