The Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team completed their first laps around the resurfaced Sachsenring circuit today, with Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi showing an encouraging pace in FP1. Showers in the afternoon meant they couldn’t improve on their morning’s times and saw them hold second and sixteenth place respectively in the combined free practice timesheets.
Viñales made good on his words from the pre-event press conference and showed he was able to find a good pace right from the start of the German round. He was quick to get a steady rhythm around the resurfaced Sachsenring circuit, as he tried multiple tyres. Exuding great confidence on his YZR-M1, he repeatedly topped the FP1 rankings and set a personal fastest lap of 1’21.637s, but was ultimately pushed down to second place, just 0.038s from first.
The Spaniard was eager to show the same strong pace in the afternoon, but was cautious not to get caught out on the slippery surface after showers hit the track. Despite the sun being out frequently, there was barely a dry line forming as rain returned for a couple of minutes, making it impossible for the Yamaha rider to better his morning effort. Nevertheless, Viñales braved the conditions to get a feel for the wet track and set the 20th fastest time, 1.902s from first.
“In the afternoon we didn’t feel as good as we did this morning, we didn’t find a good set-up. I was struggling on the wet and we have to try to work really hard to improve the bike’s set-up, especially for tomorrow, considering that it might rain during the race. Anyway, we know we can work on it. In the morning it was quite good. I tried many tyres, I felt quite strong on the bike and I have a good potential to improve, so for me it was a good day, even if we weren’t the best in the afternoon. I look forward to continue working on the bike in FP3 tomorrow.”
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