6th for Maverick Viñales in #SanMarinoGP Sprint, Aleix Espargaro 8th
Aprilia Racing continues growing, at times substantiated by thrilling results, such as the first and second place finishes a week ago in the Barcelona race (the only MotoGP team to have achieved this result this season), and at times with less flashy but just as significant results.
The Misano circuit, not exactly a favourite for the RS-GP, had Maverick and Aleix finishing the Sprint race on Saturday with a good placement, sixth and eighth respectively.
An even more significant result was seeing all four Aprilias on the track in Q2. Viñales and Fernandez, who had already gone straight through thanks to being in the top ten on Friday, were joined by Espargaró and Oliveira, first and second in the first qualifying session today. At the end of Q2, the two factory riders had taken spots on the second row (Maverick fourth and Aleix sixth), whereas the Cryptodata RNF riders occupied the fourth row in the tenth (Oliveira) and twelfth spots (Fernandez).
In the race, Maverick and Aleix stayed just behind the leaders, but without ever finding what they needed to close the gap, at least with the riders battling for third. Now, taking advantage of the data from the Sprint Race and the riders’ reports, work is underway in the garage to improve the RS-GP machines ahead of tomorrow’s Grand Prix.
Aprilia Racing would like to take a moment today to remember Mike Trimby and express our condolences for his passing. Our most heartfelt and sincere thoughts go out to his family, his loved ones, and IRTA.
Today, with the soft tyre I did not find the best feeling. The bike moved around a lot. This is something that we need to figure out and work on. Tomorrow things could go differently. In race configuration with the medium tyre, we demonstrated that we can be extremely fast. The Sprint Race was still important to understand how the bike is working and to better prepare for the long race. Being out front from the start will be fundamental.
Even though it may seem like a disappointing result, I can actually consider myself satisfied. On an unfavourable track, after yesterday’s difficulties, I was able to finish close to Maverick who rides extremely well here and not far from the podium. Even physically, I felt better than expected. I thought I would wake up in pain, but I can say that I did not have any big problems. We’ll see what we’re able to do in the long race, which is a very different situation from today.