Team Suzuki Press Office – October 2nd
Grid positions for AmericasGP:
Alex Rins: 7th – 2’03.453 (+ 0.672)
Joan Mir: 8th – 2’03.528 (+ 0.747
Despite early predictions, Saturday morning’s session at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) brought grey clouds but no rain. This made FP3 extra important for securing a position in the Top 10. Alex Rins and Joan Mir spent the early part of the session trying to improve their feeling on the incredibly bumpy track, which often unsettles the bikes. Once they begun to feel more comfortable, they went for time attacks. Rins got into 3rd, but Mir just missed out on the Top 10 with 13th.
FP4 didn’t go to plan for Joan Mir’s side of the garage, when he had an issue with his number one bike. However, he was quick to rejoin the session with his second GSX-RR and move into an impressive 2nd place. Meanwhile, Alex closed FP4 in 7th.
Mir also managed the competitive Q1 session very well, heading straight for top spot and consistently dropping his lap times to maintain his position in the Top 2 and progress into final qualifying.
In Q2 both Mir and Rins proved that they have strong pace on their GSX-RRs as they continued to shave several tenths off their lap times. Despite a couple of lost laps, Joan got into 8th, and Alex was one place ahead in 7th.
But I feel pretty confident from 7th as well - it’s the same position I qualified last time here in 2019.- Alex Rins
“I’ll start tomorrow’s race from the third row in 7th position, and we did a good job finding a stronger set-up. I also had time to try different tyre compounds and check which will be best for the race, and we worked well and improved. It was a bit of a shame that I couldn’t reach the second row on the grid, because I would’ve liked that. But I feel pretty confident from 7th as well - it’s the same position I qualified last time here in 2019. Now we just have to wait for the race, which I’m really looking forward to – although I’m expecting it to be very demanding both physically and mentally.”
“From the performance side, I’m really happy because we made a huge step. Even though we’re struggling to make one fast lap still, our overall pace is good. I’ve struggled a lot to find a nice feeling, because of the lack of stability, but I feel more confident about tomorrow’s race because my pace has improved. I would’ve liked to be a little faster in FP3 to get the direct passage to Q2, but I was feeling fine in Q1 and I got through comfortably. Obviously my bike stopped in FP4 and we’re still looking into the reasons behind that, but it didn’t really cost me in terms of my overall position today.”
I feel more confident about tomorrow’s race because my pace has improved.- Joan Mir
Ken Kawauchi - Technical Manager
“It’s been a very busy day. Alex was able to go straight into Q2 with a very good lap time, but Joan had to work his way through from Q1. Unfortunately we had some engine trouble in FP4, but despite this Joan did a great job to recover and improve in Q1 to join Alex in Q2. Our qualifying wasn’t perfect, but it also wasn’t bad. It seems both riders have got good pace and can do well in the race, so let’s see what tomorrow brings.”