Maverick Vinales: ‘I am going to fly very high…’

'...Then the bike gripped and I went straight' - Maverick Vinales.

Maverick Vinales, 2024 German MotoGP
Maverick Vinales, 2024 German MotoGP

Maverick Vinales narrowly avoided a second huge highside of the German MotoGP weekend during Sunday’s Sachsenring race.

After being thrown from his Aprilia when the rear slid-out under power at Turn 10 in Saturday's qualifying, it was an off-throttle moment that sent him ‘dirt tracking’ through the gravel on lap 7 of the grand prix.

“I braked at Turn 8 and risked a highside, so I went long, going off track. We looked at the data and we did not see any anomalies, I simply lost grip at the rear,” Vinales said.

“It was ‘oh… I am going to fly very high’. Then the bike gripped and I went straight. It’s a shame, but races are like this and we need to learn.”

The incident sent Vinales plummeting down the order, from sixth to 18th, before salvaging 12th by the chequered flag.

Insisting his physical condition from the qualifying highside was not a limitation on Sunday, Vinales predicted that even without the off-track excursion he would have finished 10 seconds behind race winner Francesco Bagnaia.

In other words, equal with Trackhouse Aprilia rider Miguel Oliveira, who took sixth place and best of the non-Ducatis.

“It’s a few races now where we are not at the level we need to be. On Friday somehow we can arrive to the limit and then it is hard to go over it, very difficult,” said Vinales, who led the timesheets on day one in Germany.

“We need to understand why. It looks like on Friday you can run away with the race, but then you end up 10 seconds behind.

“It’s interesting to understand. I saw Miguel’s race also and it looked like all weekend he had the chance to fight for the [win] and then you look where he finished and it is ten seconds.

“Hard to understand and difficult to comprehend.

"Sometimes the behaviour of the bike is really different when you are in a group or riding alone."

Vinales, who finished sixth in the Sprint, was the only factory Aprilia rider on track with team-mate Aleix Espargaro withdrawing due to his Assen injuries on Friday morning.

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