As Maverick Vinales celebrated the end of Yamaha's MotoGP podium drought, in Thailand, the TV cameras in parc ferme picked up the Spaniard giving a debrief to Yamaha top brass:

"The bike was good… I need to put more weight on the rear."

Vinales crossed the finish line just 0.270s from ending Yamaha's record losing streak, following a weekend of unexpectedly strong form by Vinales, factory team-mate Valentino Rossi and Tech3's Johann Zarco.

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While Rossi and Zarco said little had changed on their M1s, Vinales used a different set-up direction in the form of revised weight-balance in Buriram: "We tried some things that we should have tried many months ago."

Commenting on the final-turn victory showdown between Marquez and Dovizioso, Vinales suggested that he was still losing out on corner exit: "I lost quite a lot in the first part of the acceleration, so I couldn’t brake 200 meters later to try to overtake... I saw many things that we need to improve."

The rear weight post-race comments by Vinales either mean he now wants to go even further in terms of getting weight onto the rear tyre, or that they went too far in shifting the weight balance away from the rear. It's worth noting that Vinales previously experimented with raising the centre of gravity for the Aragon race, to try and get more load transfer under braking and acceleration, albeit without success.

Whichever it is, Vinales finally looked like the rider who won three of his first five races for Yamaha in 2017 - and finally sounded like a rider with a clear idea of set-up direction.

But did the new Vinales balance actually make that much difference, or was it more down to the revised rear-tyre design and Buriram track layout suiting the M1 - given Rossi was only a fraction behind Vinales and Zarco also enjoyed his best race for a long time?

Vinales knows the big test will come this weekend in Japan.

"[Buriram] was like riding the 'normal' Yamaha. Let’s see if we can get it [again] for the next one in Japan," he said.

"I’m curious to see if the change of balance on the bike can help in Japan… I believe it’s the changes we did that helped [at Buriram], but the rear tyre was also different."

While Zarco took a wet pole position at Motegi, it was one of the factory Yamaha team's worst events of last season.

The pair qualified 12th (Rossi) and (14th) with Vinales going on to finish ninth, one place behind Zarco, as Rossi crashed out of the wet race.

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