Team Suzuki Press Office – August 7th
Alex Rins: 7th (+ 3.021)
Joan Mir: DNF
Silverstone circuit is usually Suzuki’s cup of tea, but this year’s race proved to be another challenging day for the blue squad, despite Alex Rins showing fantastic pace.
A surprisingly toasty track greeted the MotoGP field and the 41,000 fans present, with temperatures on the ground reaching 44°c before the start of the 20 lap race. Alex Rins got a superb jump off the line, charging from his 11th place grid spot up into 5th. While Joan Mir was soon up into 8th place. A great pass on Bagnaia put Alex into 4th, and by the end of lap five he had moved into 2nd – thanks partly to Quartararo’s penalty and Zarco’s crash. However, once in the position Alex showed his strength; setting the fastest lap immediately, taking over the race lead one lap later, and pulling a lead of seven tenths of a second.
Joan Mir was trying hard to settle into his rhythm and climb up the pack but, while in 8th place and close to those around him, he lost the front end of his GSX-RR and tumbled out of the race at Turn 7. He was thankfully uninjured.
After holding a good lead for a run of six laps, with five laps to go Rins slipped to 3rd. Although he initially remained close to the Ducati pair in front of him, a sudden drop-off on the hard rear tyre made it tough for the determined rider to hold off attacks from his rivals. By the chequered flag Alex had slipped to 7th place, taking useful points but understandably disappointed not to have held onto the podium.
“I was feeling a bit destroyed when I arrived back in the box, I didn’t really expect this result. During the race I was riding so smoothly and controlling the throttle well, not sliding much, even when I was in the lead. But then, as the race went on, I was struggling a lot with a lack of rear traction. I want to check the situation with the tyre, because I didn’t expect to lose so many positions so quickly. At least I’ve picked up some points here, and I’ll focus on the next race.”
“The track temperature today was higher than on the previous days, and I think being in a group meant that I over-heated the front tyre a bit more than I’d have liked - I think that might be the cause of my crash. I tried to get some fresh air around the tyre, but the pack was intense. The feeling in general was quite good, and my pace wasn’t bad, but it can still be improved. I know that I was losing out in some sectors due to lack of grip, so we’ll continue working on the bike and look forward to Austria.”
Livio Suppo – Team Manager
“This wasn’t the result we were looking for, but there are some positives; both riders got very good starts, especially Alex. When he was leading, we really thought he’d be able to win, because he looked very comfortable and smooth. Unfortunately, he then started to lose grip on the rear tyre. This is something we have to analyse with Michelin – we have seen the data but we need to understand why this happened. Joan was doing a good job and he was ready to attack more, but then he lost the front. However, they were both fast and it shows our package is competitive. On to the next races…”
Ken Kawauchi – Technical Manager
“Yesterday we didn’t qualify very well, but we felt very confident about the race pace. We controlled the race well, especially at the mid-point, but unfortunately Joan crashed and shortly afterwards Alex was struggling to keep the pace. He ended up seventh due to the feel of the tyre, which was a pity because we hoped to at least get a podium. However, we confirmed that our performance can be high, and we won’t give up.”