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Viñales: “The heat is killing all of us”

Viñales: “The heat is killing all of us”

Having to battle through Q1 proves a blessing in disguise for Maverick Viñales who lines up in eighth for the Malaysian GP.

The second day of the Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix proved to be a much more positive day than the opening one for Team Suzuki Ecstar. Maverick Viñales was able to improve on his lack of feeling from Friday and was immediately more competitive in Free Practice 3. Sadly this was not enough to earn a top ten spot and Viñales was forced to fight through Q1, but his proved to be a positive. The extra track time gave the MotoGP™ World Championship rookie a chance to finalise the setting on his GSX-RR, the Spaniard able to end Q2 in eighth and again beat teammate Aleix Espargaro.

It will be a tough race as all riders are beginning to feel both the heat and the haze but even so Viñales believes there’s room to improve, especially over race distance. The Suzuki rider was unimpressed with his own performance in FP4 and will be hoping to make another step in Warm Up. He plans to follow a similar strategy to the Australian GP: make a strong start and get involved in a battle with the leaders to drag him ahead of the chasing pack.

Maverick Viñales: “Finally today was better that yesterday, we have worked hard to find some solutions to fix the problems I had yesterday with the grip, we are not yet performing at our 100% but we could improve and this is important. For some reason I could not get the direct access to Q2, but strangely this turned to my advantage because during Q1 we could try some improvements in the machine’s configuration and we found positive solutions. Maybe I’m not totally satisfied for the FP4 where we tried our race pace, but we already have some ideas about what to do and we still have the warm up to improve further. This will not be easy, the heat is killing all of us, therefore I will try to do my best for a good race. Probably the best strategy will be the same I had in Australia; try to take advantage of the position in grid and be as fastest as possible in the very early laps, in order to keep in touch with the leading group. We still need to work more, but I feel we have some directions and I’m confident we can improve.”


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