Following on from a positive end of year, Alex Rins was upbeat on Thursday evening when detailing his testing programme for Jerez, with the Spaniard revelling in the feeling offered by a new chassis.

Rins, who didn’t ride on Wednesday while test rider Sylvain Guintoli took on testing duties, was the sixth fastest rider come the end of Thursday afternoon, but it was his consistency that was most pleasing.

The 21-year old said Suzuki had disposed with its ’17 engine, and asked him to sample an evolution of the ’16 motor with an updated chassis, as it seeks to establish a definitive set-up direction for next season.

“[It was a] Positive day,” said Rins. “Finally this was my first day here in Jerez because I didn't race on the race weekend because I was injured. But anyway, I'm quite happy because we tried a lot of things and the comments were positive.

“Basically, we focused on the chassis, we tried a new chassis, and we compared it with last year's chassis. We did many laps comparing everything. It was really good because the race pace with the new chassis was also fantastic, so I'm quite happy.

“Just I feel more comfortable with the new chassis. Basically, it's this, trying to improve a bike with the chassis is very difficult, just a few negative points and the positive point is that I'm feeling more easy.”

Asked whether the character of the bike felt similar to what he raced throughout ’17, “Well, no. We are riding not with the new engine, with the possible 2018 chassis, but we aren't riding with the engine from last year [2017], we are riding with a, let's say, 2016-plus engine.

“It works good, it works different. And then we tried the last year's chassis with the same engine, and with the new one I feel more comfortable. We removed the 2017 engine, we are not using it, so we are focused on the chassis with the engine from two years ago.”

Rins will test the newest version of Suzuki’s engine on Friday, the factory’s final test day of the year.

On the factory’s decision to only run with Iannone and Guintoli on Wednesday, Rins added, “Just my crew chief called me and said, you will ride the last two days, and I said, OK, perfect. Not a problem for me.

“I think with two days, it's enough. For example, Iannone rode yesterday, I don't know what he tried, but he did not do many laps, compared to yesterday. But I don't know, I prefer to focus the work on two days and go more.”



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