Team Suzuki Ecstar Misano Test Results and Comments
In the aftermath of Alex Rins’ dramatic win over Marc Márquez at the GoPro British Grand Prix at Silverstone, Rins joined Team Suzuki Ecstar teammate Joan Mir at the Misano Test.
The test, led by Petronas SRT Yamaha’s Fabio Quartararo, allowed the Suzuki pair to do some testing on the same Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli that will be used this weekend for the San Marino Grand Prix.
After Rins last corner pass of Repsol Honda Team’s Márquez, he said “Today has been unbelievable. I won in Austin, beating Valentino, and now I’ve won here, beating Marc. These guys are very fast and are legends of the sport. I knew it would be difficult to beat Marc today, but I really wanted to try, and it was fantastic to do it. In a couple of the sectors, he was faster than me, but I could make it up in some other areas. But towards the end of the race, I felt I had better pace than him, and I told myself that I must go for it and take the chance. I saw the opportunity, and I made it happen.”
Team Suzuki Ecstar Team Manager Davide Brivio was enthusiastic after Rins’ victory: “What a win! I was hoping to have a battle like this one day, especially a battle with Márquez. Alex was just great. He stayed behind, and he stayed calm. He ran a very clever race. He studied the situation and waited for the right moment to try for the win. It was perfect, fantastic. To win against Márquez isn’t easy, and we’re very happy! Sylvain [Guintoli] got some good points, and he has done a great job to help us develop the bike.”
As a fill-in rider for the injured Mir, Suzuki development rider Guintoli was able to finish in P12. “The race felt good for me,” Guintoli said. “I had strong pace, especially towards the end. I was hoping to be able to score points, but I didn’t expect this many and a 12th place. It’s fantastic that Alex put the bike on the top step, the team really deserve it, and it just shows how much hard work and commitment they are putting in all the time. What a great weekend.”
Although Rins and Mir finished outside of the top 10 at the Misano Test, they were fastest in their final sessions and found positives in the testing.
“Honestly, I’m very happy to already be back riding!” Rins said. “After only four days, I’m still feeling the thrill of the victory in Silverstone, and I’m fully enjoying these sensations on my Suzuki…I think it was a really positive test for us, we tried a lot of things, including the different chassis which we already tried at the Montmelo Test.
“We also tried a swingarm and some electronic settings, as well as some new tires that Michelin gave us. So, in general, it was positive. I’m not concerned by the lap times I’ve set during this test. There are no prizes for setting the quickest time, and there’s no point pushing to the limit when you’re trying to test new things…We’re already thinking ahead to the San Marino GP, so we need to finalize a good setup for this tire option, as the white-striped tire was the tire choice of last year’s race.”
The Misano test was Mir’s first ride since suffering chest and lung bruising in a crash at the Czech Grand Prix. “I am happy to be back and feel the MotoGP again,” Mir said. “I did an effective rehab and recuperation job and, with the training last week, I now feel almost 100 percent fit. My feeling on the bike was good…which actually was already above expectations. I’m not yet at 100 percent, so now I feel tired, but we were able to make a positive test without compromising the technical work. Now, I have two weeks to rest a bit more and to train to get ready for the GP. We worked mostly on the settings of the bike—nothing special apart getting the feeling.”
Team Suzuki Ecstar Technical Manager Ken Kawauchi had this to say after the Misano Test: “In truth, we didn’t really have brand new items here. Our main work was to confirm what we already tested in Brno. Trying those items again meant we could find some direction for the development. I’m very satisfied with these two days. It was also important to have Joan back with us and check his recovery, as this was the first time for him on the bike after the crash in Brno. I was happy to see that his physical condition is very good. Alex is also taking profit of the good shape he is in, especially after the win in Silverstone, so I hope for a good race when we return here for the GP in two weeks.”
Brivio chimed in following the test, saying, “It has been a positive test because we went back and tried to continue the work that we already started in Brno. For instance, we had a different chassis specification there that we wanted to check here as well, which is a different track and also requires different settings. We could also focus on preparing for the next race here in Misano. It was positive for Joan to come back here after his injury because he could rediscover his feeling in a test situation, which is easier than restarting during a race weekend. He got his confidence back quickly under these circumstances, and we could also do some work with him to prepare for the race. Alex also carried on a positive preparation for the forthcoming GP weekend, so we cannot wait to get back into racing mode very soon.”
At the end of the Misano Test, Mir was in P11, 1.363 seconds off of leader Fabio Quartararo’s pace, though less than a tenth-of-a-second behind MotoGP series leader and defending MotoGP World Champion Márquez. Rins finished the test two positions behind Mir, 1.481 seconds behind the Petronas Yamaha SRT mounted Frenchman.
Photo Gallery – Misano MotoGP Testing