26 April 2016
MotoGP: Vinales gets wings at Jerez test
“Not a big difference. But for sure it helps” – Maverick Vinales.
Maverick Vinales made his debut with wings on the Suzuki MotoGP machine during Monday's post-race test at Jerez.
“Yes, I tried. Not a big difference. But for sure it helps, like in Turn 1 to Turn 2, it keeps the bike more down and makes better than to use the brakes,” explained Vinales, sixth in the race. “Anyway, it's not a big difference but if we can have it, perfect, because it's one help. Small help, but over 27 laps for sure it makes a lot.”
The other main focus for Vinales - who set the third best lap time, just 0.223s from fastest man Marc Marquez - was to try some new set-up ideas and the latest Michelin tyres.
“Our main priority was to work on the set-up, I need to reduce the spinning and to find a better traction as Le Mans will be a very demanding track in terms of hard braking and acceleration,” he confirmed.
“I tried the new tyres for the rear but mainly I liked the soft front. Over the weekend we couldn't find the best [set-up] with them, so I didn't use them, but today with some new set-up they work very well and we will try to adopt it more consistently.”
Team-mate Aleix Espargaro, who briefly tried the winglets during Friday practice, was sixth quickest and only 0.369s from the top.
“Basically today we tried the winglets again after their debut on Friday and we focused a huge amount of work on different set-up possibilities,” said Espargaro. “The electronics are another issue we explored more, as yesterday in the race I had some trouble with the traction and we tried to find some solution for it.
“The good thing is that I used only three tyres to make 75 laps today, as we needed to further investigate the potential of the GSX-RR when the tyres got really worn, and the timesheets confirmed that we can be performing even in those conditions, and with a 25-lap rear tyre.
“I tried the new Michelin front tyres, I'm not feeling so good with the new ['in-between'] tyre; at the moment the tyre we used in race seems to me to have the bigger potential and feeling.
“We had the chance to make a back-to-back test with the winglets: they are not a huge improvement, but they help a little: If we can get even a very small advantage out of them, for sure it was worthy to try them.
“Finally today we had the objective to find a better traction from the rear and it looks like we achieved the result, this make me happy and confident thinking ahead to Le Mans, where traction will be much important.”
Vinales, heavily rumoured to be heading to Yamaha next season, is just one point ahead of Espargaro in the fight for sixth in the world championship.
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