Aleix Espargaro and Suzuki will start the Spanish MotoGP from sixth on the grid, but is still eagerly awaiting engine performance parts for the GSX-RR.

Unlike at the opening events, Jerez has a much shorter main straight - but Espargaro pointed out that it's acceleration as well as top speed that they are lacking.

"So I'm happy and enjoy at lot this bike, but as soon as we have power we will be closer and closer," he said. "Because now it's not just about the straights. There is only one [long] straight at each track. But each time we accelerate they open ten metres. So it's not easy."

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Nevertheless the Spaniard, who gave the returning Suzuki team its best result of the season with seventh in Argentina, believes they are in slightly better shape for Sunday.

"Our pace is not that bad on both tyres. Obviously Jorge, Marc and I think Vale will be half-a-second faster than us. But I think our pace is a little bit closer than in Argentina."

Espargaro also highlighted the general lack of grip at Jerez.

"As we said in the Safety Commission yesterday this asphalt is really old, 11 years old, so the grip is really, really low. You don't destroy the tyre, but you spin a lot all the time.

"For example Misano was really old tarmac, so slippery, and that was seven years old. So I think it is time to change. They say it is a priority and they will try."

Rookie team-mate Maverick Vinales qualified 14th for his first home race in the premier-class.

"I'm quite disappointed because I made a mistake at the last corner of my final lap in Q1 that prevented me entering Q2. It's a pity because I was not far from the fastest rider and the lap-time was good overall.

"I think starting from 14th place will be hard but I'll try to do as much as I can to recover."