The Algarve International Circuit plays host to round three of the 2021 MotoGP season this weekend, with Alex Rins and Joan Mir currently fifth and sixth in the championship. 

The Suzuki pair will certainly be hoping for better luck in Portimao compared to last season’s finale. World Champion Mir was forced to retire from the race due to early contact and a suspected issue with the bike, while Rins could only manage 15th place. 

Rins goes into Sunday’s race following an enthralling last lap battle with Maverick Vinales in Doha, which saw him take fourth position over his fellow Spaniard. 

Rins is yet to manage a podium in 2021, but speaking ahead of this weekend, he said: "I’m very happy to arrive in Portimão because it’s a circuit I really like and it’s very enjoyable to ride. 

"There are a lot of ups and downs and it’s a lot of fun on the MotoGP bike. 

"I’m really excited to meet up with my team again and to get back on my bike! I’ll give my all and let’s see where we end up."

For team-mate Mir, it was ultimately a disappointing end to race two in Doha after showing a great deal of potential. 

The current world champion looked on course for a similar result as race one (fourth), but after contact with Jack Miller twice in a matter of corners, the 23 year-old struggled to regain the momentum he had early on as he finished seventh. 

Portimao was one of the worst rounds for Mir last year in what was a stunning second season in MotoGP. But with that said, Mir is ‘looking forward’ to the race as he aims to score ‘important points’. 

"I’m really looking forward to starting the race weekend in Portimão, because last year we had bad luck and I had to retire from the race, which was a shame," added Mir. 

"So this year I want to have a better experience. It’s a track that I really enjoy and I think that it could suit our bike quite well too. 

"It will be important to score points and continue improving, and I can’t wait to get back on the bike!"