Maverick Viñales finishes 7th in #SpanishGP Sprint, DNF for Aleix Espargaro

 In MotoGP, News

After their show of strength yesterday, with two Aprilias in the lead, Saturday in Jerez de La Frontera also had the Italian bikes confirming their extremely competitive status. In qualifying, a few drops of rain added to the already high tension, forcing teams and riders to make vastly different strategic choices.

Aleix, opting to stay out on the track with slicks for the entire session, did a perfect lap right in the finale, earning a well-deserved pole position. It was a different story for Maverick, who boxed to put on new tyres but was then unable to find a lap consistent with the pace he had demonstrated during practice.

Starting from the tenth spot on the grid, Maverick recovered ground all the way to seventh place, also doing the fourth fastest lap time – proof that he did have the speed that would have earned him a better result.

For pole man Aleix, on the other hand, Saturday ended on a bitter note. After a good start, he stayed in the leading group for quite a while as he prepared his attack, despite the significant difficulty overtaking on the Spanish track. However, a crash during the fifth lap put an end to the Aprilia rider’s hopes.


I can’t help but to be pleased. The truth is that in the conditions this morning during qualifying, I did not have a good feeling at all and I was unable to achieve one hundred percent. Then, in the race, starting from the rear you have to battle, overtake, you’re under attack – sometimes rather aggressively – and everything is more complicated. The fact of the matter is that when I had open track ahead, I was able to maintain the same pace as the leaders and that’s what is frustrating because I don’t think this position is a proper reflection of our potential.


A shame to have finished Saturday that way after taking pole position. To be honest, I started well in both starts but the KTMs have something more than us in that area. Then the riders who had started with the soft rear had a bit more grip, although the pace wasn’t high at all. But we know that here in Jerez, if you’re up front you are able to defend your position. I was thinking about an attack when I was behind Martin, but I struggled with the front and in the end I crashed. With this new format, we have a chance at redemption tomorrow, where there are important points up for grabs.

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