2020 MotoGP world champion Joan Mir claimed his first podium of the 2021 campaign with third place behind Fabio Quartararo and Francesco Bagnaia

As was the case during the first Qatar MotoGP race, Mir was involved in a race-long battle against the Ducati bikes of Johann Zarco and Bagnaia, with the Italian coming out on top while Zarco crashed out with a few laps remaining. 

While the Spaniard lost out in Qatar in devastating fashion as both Ducati’s overhauled Mir at the line, today’s podium in Portimao results in him taking a podium sooner than he did during his title winning 2020 season. 

When summing up his weekend, Mir said: "It was a positive weekend overall. This is probably not the best track for me and I was still able to finish on the podium so I’m happy. 

"In the warm up I felt really, really strong, but in the middle of the race I had some trouble with the front part of the bike and I started to go backwards. 

"But then in the last laps I was able to survive and to take again a positive pace."

With three points scoring finishes during the first three Grand Prix, it’s already been a much improved start for Mir, who will be hoping the first podium has a similar effect as it did in 2020. 

Mir’s second place at round four in Austria produced a run of results that included 7 podiums in nine races. 

"Last year with the first podium we got more speed and were able to stay in the podium," said Mir. 

"The first step is to be on the podium. I think that this start of the season with the tracks that we had is not easy because Qatar, here, then Jerez and Le Mans, are probably not the best ones for the Suzuki. 

"But we fought for the podium in both tracks. So if we got a podium here, then maybe it will be better in Jerez. 

"I will try, but I’m not thinking about the championship. I’m thinking race-by-race, to be relax and give my 100%."