Avintia Esponsorama Ducati riders Enea Bastianini and Luca Marini head to Portimao for round three of the 2021 championship, which will be their first time on MotoGP machinery at a circuit other than Losail. 

Bastianini has been mightily impressive so far with a tenth and 11th place result at the season opening Qatar races. 

Bastianini finished only five and half seconds away from race winner Fabio Quartararo during the Doha Grand Prix, as he continues to show the consistency that took him to the Moto2 title last year. 

The Italian also has fond memories of Portimao, as he claimed the title at the Algarve International Circuit, and is looking forward to returning there this weekend. 

"Portimao is a very funny track, I have very good memories of last year. It will be something new as so far we have only raced in Qatar, and I am very excited about the change of track," said Bastianini. 

"We need to stay focused to be fast and improve, although I think this weekend will be more complicated than the previous ones. 

"We will see how is my adaptation to this track with the Ducati."

For his team-mate Marini, the Sky VR46 Avintia rider is yet to score points after a 16th and 18th place finish. 

As is the case for all three rookies, the change of track will present a new opportunity to improve, but also make evaluating their progress difficult due to the unique layout compared to more familiar tracks on the MotoGP calendar.

However, Portimao was a good track for Marini in 2020 as he finished the Moto2 race second. 

"It will be an interesting weekend: for the first time I will ride the Ducati on a track different than Qatar," added the 23 year-old.

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"We will try to give our best and check the gap from the very first guys after the FP. 

"We will start from the Losail standard bike for making another step forward in turning and on the front. Then I have to learn the new lines, trajectories and braking points as soon as I can. 

"We need to work on the tires too because, compared to Qatar, the choice here will be less obvious between hard, soft, and medium. 

"I really like the track and I’m curious to see what will happen."