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The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team showed their fighting spirit throughout the 28-lap NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich at the Red Bull Ring – Spielberg, but a lack of rear grip denied them the chance to challenge at the front. Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi secured sixth and seventh place respectively.

SPIELBERG (AUSTRIA), 13TH AUGUST 2017

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi had the throttle fully open at the NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich, as they contended in a seven-rider fight at the front in the early stages of the race. The teammates lost some time, running wide in turn 1 in separate incidents, but they put their heads down to collect crucial championship points, taking sixth and seventh place respectively.

Viñales had a good start and held on to his fourth place going into the first corner. He briefly made a move on Rossi on lap 3, but couldn’t make it stick. He was eager to have another go in turn 1 on the next lap, but ran wide and fell back to seventh place.

The young Spaniard didn’t let the small error upset his rhythm and, with 15 laps to go, he was back behind his teammate, ready to join the seven-rider fight for the lead. As Rossi went wide in turn one, Viñales moved up to sixth. On lap 17 the young gun was ready to take on Johann Zarco. He was looking threatening behind the satellite rider for the remainder of the race, but was not able to squeeze his number 25 bike past the Frenchman, and crossed the line in sixth place, 7.447s from the front.

Starting the race from seventh on the grid, Rossi slotted into fifth place storming towards turn 1, and quickly fought his way to fourth past his teammate. He withstood the pressure Viñales put on him in the opening laps, as he chased the leading trio.

The Doctor reached the back of Marc Marquez’s bike on lap eight, bringing Zarco with him, but encountered a set-back. A block pass from the fellow Yamaha rider pushed the Italian back to sixth behind the chasing Dani Pedrosa. Running wide in turn 1, with 15 laps to go, Rossi soon fell back behind Viñales to seventh. He was eager to follow his teammate, but was unable to keep up a consistent pace in the high 1’24s and low 1’25s, and decided to focus on bringing home his bike in seventh place, 8.995s from first.

Today’s race results see Viñales move back to third in the championship standings, 24 points behind the leader and 9 points ahead of Rossi. The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team holds second place in the team rankings, with a 22-point margin to the front. In the Constructor championship, Yamaha holds the top spot. They are on equal points with Honda, each having earned 211 in total and both scored four GP wins, but Yamaha earned one more second place so far this season.

The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team will have a private test at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli next week on Sunday, August 20th. After that the team will be back in action in two weeks’ time for the Octo British Grand Prix at the Silverstone Circuit.

Massimo Meregalli

MASSIMO MEREGALLI

TEAM DIRECTOR

We had anticipated that this would be a challenging race, that would be hard on the tyres. We decided to go with the hard rear spec this morning, but in the end this didn’t pay off as we had hoped. The start of the race went well: both Maverick and Valentino were able to compete at the front of the field, but after 10 laps they started to suffer from a lack of grip from the rear tyre. It was unfortunate that this cost us some valuable points in the championship challenge, but the riders did well to hold on to sixth and seventh place and bring home the best results possible under these circumstances. The team will work hard to find a solution for the issue before the race at Silverstone, at the private test in Misano next weekend.

Maverick Viñales

MAVERICK VIÑALES

MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP RIDER

I suffered from a big drop in grip of the rear tyre for almost the entire race. When I went wide as I was fighting with Valentino, I just tried to calm down, make the tyre work until the end, but it was totally impossible. Not only with other manufacturers, but also with Zarco, it was really difficult to keep following them. We have to work really hard if we want to fight for this championship. I like Silverstone a lot, it is one of the best tracks on the calendar. I always like going there, I really like the lay-out. I will go for the best result possible, trying to be on top.

Valentino Rossi

VALENTINO ROSSI

MOVISTAR YAMAHA MOTOGP RIDER

Today the problems started after ten or twelve laps. Unfortunately, we stressed the rear tyre too much, so the rear tyre dropped a lot and we lost a lot of performance and speed. From that moment on it was very difficult to control the bike and I also made a mistake on the brakes. I didn’t have the pace in the second half of the race, I suffered too much from a lack of grip. It’s a shame because we worked a lot, but it looks like it’s the same problem as we had in Jerez and Barcelona. When we use the rear tyre too much, the bike becomes slower and more difficult to ride in the second half of the race. For sure we have to work a lot mechanically and also on the electronics to improve this problem.

About The Author

Sienna Wedes
PR Communications

Sienna manages all FORMULA Magazine social media platforms covering news on a daily basis with higher emphasis during MotoGP rounds. She coordinates specific interviews with race engineers and chief mechanics. Growing up in a motorsport family Sienna understands the sport and what the supporters and fans enjoy.