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Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar) has had a different season so far to the one he had imagined, and he recently talked to motogp.com about life on the Hamamatsu Factory machine after some time to settle in. The preseason started well, but the new partnership has since found the going tougher in an incredibly competitive field this year.
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Iannone: "I’m faster than Maverick on the Suzuki"
Andrea Iannone: “It’s a very difficult part of the Championship for us, because we expected a completely different situation. The first impression with the bike was fantastic. But during the winter we tried to improve some things, some parts. But now we haven’t improved in some areas. But I think that step-by-step and with a good focus, me and Suzuki have the same goal, and for sure I believe we will arrive.”
As that project continues, one key thing for the Italian is the data from the man he replaced at the team – Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) – as he adapts to the bike. Iannone says there are fewer differences between their styles than could have been expected, and that he’s faster than Viñales on the Suzuki - lowering his laptimes. However, as 2017 keeps rewriting the history books, that quicker laptime doesn’t always translate into better positions on track – with the rest of the field having also been hard at work over winter.
AI29: “I look at Maverick’s data from last year and we don’t ride very different to each other. Only in the last part of the entry [to the corner], he has the bike straighter and I arrived with more lean angle. But I try to adjust, because Maverick didn’t struggle with the front of the Suzuki and I struggle a lot, always. More or less in all races I’m faster than him, I improve his lap times from last year. But the result is completely different. Because with a better lap time, 3 or 4 tenths better, I’m in 10 position, whilst he was in second or fourth. So this year is completely different. The level is very, very high.”
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