JEREZ, Spain – Maverick Viñales topped the charts as MotoGP teams rolled into Circuito de Jerez for post-season testing.
Viñales led the way with a time of 1:37.131, outrunning Petronas Yamaha SRT rider Fabio Quartararo by .754 seconds. He completed 68 laps as he familiarized himself with the new engine and showed no signs of slowing down.
“We are working a lot on the new engine trying to understand the positives and negative points of the new bike,” said Viñales. “This test is quite important for us to decide on the engines and take the right approach to further improve the engine on the track, which is our focus here. We are trying to understand the best way to work. For tomorrow my plan is the same. I need to make laps with the engine, and I also need to try the tyres, and then we will see. Even if it rains, we need to go out and try the newer stuff. For sure, we are comparing the old and new items back-to-back. The positive point is that I felt good with both bikes today, so we have two good choices, which is even better. I feel we can create a lot of potential with the new engine.”
Team Suzuki Ecstar put together an impressive afternoon, with Joan Mir and Alex Rins going third and fourth fastest, respectively. Franco Morbidelli was fifth fastest on the second Petronas Yamaha SRT bike.
Marc Marquez had an up and down day as the reigning MotoGP champion crashed his bike in turn 13. He was taken to the medical center, but was given the all-clear to continue testing. The Repsol Honda team had three bikes on hand for Marquez to test, so the crash didn’t slow the team or rider down.
The remainder of the top-10 included Cal Crutchlow, Pol Espargaro, Danilo Petrucci and Andrea Dovizioso.