The VR46 Ducati rider dropped from eleventh to 19th after being forced to surrender time due to running off track during the early race laps in Austin.

But the Italian’s hopes of keeping his 2022 points run alive were hampered by time lost on the straights.

“A really tough weekend, from the beginning I was slow. In race pace but also the hot lap. I miss a lot in acceleration. From Turn 11 on the back straight to Turn 12 I lose a lot,” Marini said.

“During all the weekend I asked Ducati and my crew to understand why we are losing so much, if I can do something more or something different to avoid this problem.

“Because the feeling on the bike is not so big, but looking at the data when we compare with other Ducati riders I lose more-or-less 4 tenths in the two straights. Maybe more.

“For sure I was not so strong also in the corners, but the biggest problem was this. It’s also frustrating to have this lack of acceleration, in a race even more than when you ride alone.”

Optimising the electronics had been an issue for all the GP22 riders, but Marini feels that has now largely been overcome.

“The electronic side of the bike now is good. The power, the acceleration when I’m riding alone in practice [feels] okay, but when I cross the finish line I saw every time a very slow lap. Riding the bike I don’t feel so slow.

“When we compare the data in the garage, most of the time I’m losing is on the straight but we don’t know why.

“Because we tried different electronics, torque, more power, less power, more traction [control], less traction, more pickup, less pickup, more anti-wheelie, less anti-wheelie. We tried everything. Because from FP1 we had the problem. But even in the race we didn’t find solutions.

“So I want to check, also with Ducati, to try to analyse well. I don’t know if it’s a problem to do with my weight because I’m 4-5 kg more. I don’t think it’s because I’m taller it’s not a problem of aerodynamics because I’m losing from the first gear to the fifth gear, then when I put sixth gear it’s okay. Sometimes I even recover a little bit the gap because I’m very tall but take a lot of care of my position on the bike to be very aerodynamic.

“It's more from first gear to fifth gear that I’m losing an amount of time.

“We need to understand why. Just this. But in my opinion, the bike compared to the first races is improved. But the other Ducatis have improved more.”

Marini, who has a best finish of eleventh so far this season, was twelfth at Portimao in both his 2021 rookie season appearances, having stood on the podium as a Moto2 rider in the inaugural November 2020 event.

“The Portimao track is one of my favourites, last year we had a good race here in the first weekend of April: the goal is to immediately find the right feeling to be able to structure the work well during all the sessions and do well in the race.”

Meanwhile, team-mate Marco Bezzecchi currently leads the rookie of the year standings courtesy of a ninth place in Argentina.

“Portimao is a truly unique track, a track where there is not a moment to breathe. I can't wait to ride there with the MotoGP, it will be special,” he said. “Too bad for the race in Austin [where he fell], because the pace was not bad at all and we could recover places.

“The goal is to make a step forward in qualifying and start a few positions ahead.”