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Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) had a difficult weekend in Le Mans, however his start to the Gran Premio d’Italia Oakley suggests he and the team could have turned a corner with the M1 Yamaha.
Viñales ended Friday’s Free Practice second on the combined time sheets, with only Andrea Iannone’s (Team Suzuki Ecstar) cracking lap time getting the better of the number 25. This may not have been a surprise to some though, as before heading to the Italian Grand Prix, the Movistar Yamaha team tested at Montmeló. Viñales explained before the weekend and again after today’s track time how they’ve “gained confidence” from that test.
The 23-year-old, despite an early crash in FP1, reflected on a very positive day. “Today has been good despite this morning… I was pushing on the very early laps and the brakes weren’t warm enough but, I’m actually really happy,” says Viñales.
The former Moto3™ World Champion - as well as his teammate Valentino Rossi - has been struggling with the tyres when the temperatures rise. However, despite admitting there’s still work to do, Viñales felt good in FP2 when track temperatures were warmer. “We still need to work a lot, you know with the electronics, power, anti-wheelie, so we have room to improve for tomorrow. I’m actually happy that in the afternoon we felt good with the bike and with the tires with the hot conditions, and I’m hoping to also feel that in the race.”
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