Maverick Vinales has conceded the same set-up and approach which earned him a podium in Thailand could not produce a similar performance from his Movistar Yamaha at Motegi.

The Spanish rider led the Yamaha resurgence at Buriram with a first podium since the German round but now feels the gains enjoyed in Thailand were not transferable to the Motegi circuit having struggled for race pace in a familiar fashion to other races.



Having suffered with his pace during practice and qualifying, Vinales says he opted for both ‘something different’ in Sunday warm-up and his Buriram set-up but neither paid off as he had hoped leaving him seventh, with team-mate Valentino Rossi faring better in fourth place and Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Johann Zarco in sixth spot.

“We shuffled a lot with the settings of the bike, but we couldn't be fast in the race,” Vinales said. “We tried something different before the race, but it didn't really work. We followed a direction we used in Buriram to see if that would work, but in the end it wasn't like that.

“I couldn't ride like I wanted to, so we need to keep working and trying to stay focused on the way we manage the race weekend, and stay strong. We are going to try to do our best again on Phillip Island, and we'll try to see where we stand.”

Despite just four rostrum results to his name so far in 2018, Vinales holds on to fourth place in the MotoGP riders’ world championship but did see LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow close the gap to seven points in fifth place.


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