Solid Run at Austrian MotoGP by Rossi and Viñales
In comparison to their performance at the Czech round the previous weekend, ENEOS-sponsored Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP riders Valentino Rossi and Maverick Viñales had a much better finish at the Austrian myWorld Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich, held at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. Rossi fought his way up from tenth on the grid for a fourth place finish, with Viñales losing some ground in a dicey opening lap, but having a great chase after Rossi for fifth.
After a shaky race start, Rossi set found a great pace that allowed him to move from P10 to P7, setting the fastest provisional lap on lap 3 while trying to catch the front four. As Rossi looked for a way to take fourth, a crash by Jack Miller in Turn 9 of lap 8 allowed or Rossi to make his move. However, Rossi, a nine-time World Champion, couldn’t quite match Fabio Quartararo’s pace, but held his fourth place position when crossing the finish line.
“Fourth is a good result for this weekend,” said Rossi. “On paper we should’ve done worse, but I was able to recover some positions after starting tenth on the grid. Unfortunately the guys in front were a bit faster, but to stay in front of Maverick and Rins was great.”
Viñales, who had better qualifying results and a P4 start on the grid, was pushed back to sixth during the first tight corners of the race. He found himself behind Rossi and Álex Rins, but passed Rins on lap 6 and started chasing his teammate. Viñales came close to making a move on Rossi, setting various personal best sectors in the process, only 0.3-seconds behind during the second half of the race, but couldn’t, claiming fifth place overall.
“I started strong, but in Turn 3 I got into it with Jack Miller and that opened the door for many riders,” Viñales explained. “We used a different setup to try and reduce wheelspin, but the track conditions changed a lot and I was going through tires quickly. I’m pleased with fifth – it’s an improvement over last year’s finish – and I’ll keep working to find ways to go faster. I’ll be giving it 100% at Silverstone!”
Rossi takes fifth in the championship standings from Viñales once again, with only one point separating them. Yamaha remains third in manufacturer standings with Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP also third in team classification.
Rossi and Viñales head to the GoPro British Grand Prix at Silverstone Circuit in the UK, held on August 23-25.