Rossi: “The feeling is positive”

‘The Doctor’ reflects on ending the opening day at Assen in fourth

Last year’s Dutch GP race winner Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) got his 2018 Motul TT Assen off to a solid start after ending Friday as the fourth fastest rider on track.

Rossi came into Assen on the back of three consecutive podium finishes, with Friday confirming that the nine-time World Champion should be right in the hunt for another rostrum this weekend. “Yes, on paper we expected to be strong, you never know, but after the first day the feeling is positive because I was good in the morning and also in the afternoon I was in the top four,” explained the number 46, who was third in the morning session.

The 39-year-old also praised the Michelin tyre compounds the riders have at their disposal this weekend, something ‘The Doctor’ was critical of in Barcelona. “The bike works well in Assen, the tyres are good and you can push for a good pace for a lot of laps,” affirmed Rossi. “We need to work well and try to understand the best tyre choice for Sunday, and I’m hoping this weather continues for the whole weekend.”

With teammate Maverick Viñales topping the timesheets on the opening day, can either the Spaniard or the Italian put the YZR-M1 on pole for Sunday’s race? Find out tomorrow when qualifying gets underway at 14:10 local time (GMT +2).