Monster Energy Yamaha Conclude 2019 Testing with Bright Prospects despite Rain

Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP‘s Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi had to deal with rain on the second day of 2020 pre-season testing at the Circuito de Jerez - Ángel Nieto, but they didn‘t let it dampen their spirits.

The team-mates both beamed about the progress they made with the protype and new testing items and completed the Jerez Test in 1st and 11th place respectively in the combined Day 1-2 rankings.

Viñales had already adapted his testing style this year: riding less laps but going all out whilst focusing on tweaking specific areas rather than putting in as much laps as possible trying various changes at once. Unfortunately, due to today‘s rain, the test was wrapped up early. The conditions forced the Spaniard to be even more strict in choosing his priorities. He completed 15 laps and posted a best time of 1'37.964s on lap 9. This put him fourth in the Day-2 timesheets, 0.144s from first. His superb 1‘37.131s lap from yesterday kept him firmly in first place in the overall timesheets, with a 0.689s margin over second place.

Rossi set out in Jerez today to make a detailed comparison between the old and the new bike. He was quickly up to speed, but soon the rain spoiled his plans. The Doctor used the wet track conditions in the afternoon to his advantage to work with the new testing items in the cold and wet. He completed 33 laps in total. His best time was a 1'38.352s, 0.407s faster than his best from yesterday and set on only his tenth lap of the day. This put him in 10th place in today's standings, 0.532s from first, and in 11th position in the combined results, 1.221s from the top.

Maverick Viñales - Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team
“Actually, I felt really good on the bike, riding in a really good way. Yesterday, I felt fantastic on all the laps and that is the most important. I end the 2019 season with a great feeling and a lot of motivation, and that keeps you going when preparing for the new season. Yamaha is working really hard, but we‘re still working on top speed. For sure in other areas we‘re quite strong, but we need to stay focused on improving our weaker areas for the next test in Sepang.”
Valentino Rossi - Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team
“It‘s a shame about the weather today. It was an important day because we had to work on making a comparison between the new and the old bike, so we had a good program, but, unfortunately, we did only ten laps on the dry, and after that we did some laps on the wet. But the feeling is positive, a lot better than yesterday. On the dry I was a lot faster. I improved my best lap time from the day before already after three laps, and today I was more competitive. After the rain we did some work on the new bike on the wet, and it wasn‘t so bad, but it was only half a day.”
Massimo Meregalli - Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team Director
“As said in Valencia last week, the target of this test was to evaluate the new bike and also to get the same confirmation we got there, and so far, apart from the rain, the information we got was basically more or less the same. Maverick has been quicker with the new bike, so for sure the starting point, the base of this new bike, is working. Saying that, we still have work to do for the first race, but for me, when I look back to when we tried new items in the last two years, we never reached this point. I can see that it‘s promising. The riders are always looking for more, but what we were looking for was increasing the smoothness and increasing the top speed gradually, and we did. The area where we should try to make another step is top speed, and I am confident that we will achieve this."