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MotoGP, Vinales: "Aprilia has a good pace, we started again from the level of Austin"

"Today I made the difference along with Bagnaia and Marquez. I still have something to improve, especially in braking, but I rode really well and I feel I have great potential."

MotoGP: Vinales:

Maverick Vinales smiles at the end of the first day of action at the Jerez track. Dominator of the Round in Austin, after being the protagonist already in Portugal, the Catalan of the Aprilia Racing team also started the weekend in Andalusia on the right foot, finishing Friday second only to Francesco Bagnaia, author of the new track record in Jerez.

"I broke the track record and then Pecco did it too, how can I call it? Fantastic? Honestly, it was a really good day. We were able to restart from the level we had in Austin, which is very important. Jerez is a track where most of the teams do quite a lot of testing and have good data at their disposal, so to be at the top in a situation like this, where they all start from a good level, is really good news - Maverick commented - It's only Friday, of course. But we know how to work to improve between Friday and Saturday and between Saturday and Sunday, so we will try."

On balance, then, it was a solid Friday for the 29-year-old. Despite a harmless crash entering Turn 1 in the afternoon session.

"It was my mistake. I went over the line over the curb, I was trying to see if there was any grip, but obviously there wasn't and I lost the front. I was so slow that I thought I could make a save, but as soon as I saw that I was losing the rear I told myself that it was better to avoid a save, because otherwise it could have been a highside. It was fun. I really enjoyed riding today and I know very well in which areas I can improve tomorrow," he explained, "The main key to making a step forward will be in the braking in Turns 1, 2 and 6. This is because in my opinion we don't have the right set-up in terms of electronics. The engine braking set-up is not perfect and so I can't exploit the maximum performance of our bike."

As calm as in Texas, Top Gun is convinced that he has all the right cards to do well in Spain as well.

"I feel the same way and as it was also in Valencia last year, where I was able to ride the bike to the maximum. When I can ride the best I'm happy, the result doesn't matter," he said, " Today I was able to ride really well. There are still things to improve, but I feel I have a lot of potential. We had a good pace, even slightly improvable, there are two or three riders who are making a difference: Marc Marquez is very strong, as is Pecco. For me they are both candidates to fight for the victory and the first positions. I also think Aleix however has the opportunity to have a good weekend here, because this is a circuit where he is fast and can do well."

After the tests, a battle between Aprilia and Ducati is expected in Jerez, but Vinales cannot say exactly what the weaknesses and strengths of the RS-GP are compared to the Desmosedici.

"It is complicated to say where we are going better or where we are weaker. We have to be focused on not losing too much where we are weaker and gaining a lot where we are strong. This is our mentality. Honestly, I think we all match each other on this track, but I still need to improve," he noted, " T4 is definitely my sector in Jerez, so I can make a difference, but in the third sector I take three tenths, so I will have to improve in this part of the track. Maybe I will take a tenth in sector four and gain two in sector three. We'll see. It will be a good match."

The Aprilia proved to be stable and comfortable in fast corners, where it can exploit great speed. All thanks to the high aerodynamic load?

"Yes, but even last year we were very competitive in the fourth sector, although we were not at the level of this year," Maverick pointed out. " In the slow corners, as mentioned, is where the engine brake tuning is needed and I still can't get into the corners well, because I have to stop the bike, turn and then accelerate. I can't stop the bike while I'm cornering, and then accelerate, and so I'm slow in that area."

Automatic Translation by DeepL

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