Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team's Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi soldiered on during a wet second day at the Termas de Río Hondo Circuit. They secured a 9th and 11th starting position respectively for tomorrow's Gran Premio de la República Argentina.

Termas de Río Hondo (Argentina), 7th April 2018

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP's Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi qualified in 9th and 11th position on the grid for tomorrow's Gran Premio de la República Argentina.

 

Viñales didn’t waste any time to commence the 15-minute shoot-out. He was fast to leave the team’s pit box as he had planned on making a firm challenge for the front rows. However, it soon became clear that the mixed track conditions caused him to struggle to find grip, putting a damper on his time-attack efforts.

 

Opting for staying out on wet tyres throughout Q2, the Spaniard completed eight laps in total. His best time was set on his very last try, when he posted a 1'49.044s for ninth place, 1.891s from first.

 

Rossi also quickly headed out of pit lane at the start of the qualifying session, hoping to find clear space on track. However, the nine-time World Champion had the same non-stop strategy as his teammate and shared a similar experience, as he was unable to find a good feeling.

 

The treacherous conditions caused the Italian rider to run wide when he was on route for a hot lap, which led him to lose time and he got pushed back to twelfth place. But, not one to be defeated easily, he responded by picking up one place on his final attempt. He set a 1'49.326s for 11th position, 2.173s from the front.

 

Today's qualifying results will see Viñales and Rossi start tomorrow’s race from the third and fourth row of the grid. Tomorrow the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP teammates will continue the action at 10:40 - 11:00 (local track time, GMT-3) in the morning warm-up session, followed by the race at 15:00.
Massimo Meregalli

Massimo Meregalli

Team Director

Today's conditions were challenging, though the rain was not unexpected. It was important for the team to use the FP3 and FP4 sessions to try out some further set-up changes in the wet. Unfortunately, the track conditions were quite mixed, making the tyre choice a gamble as parts of the track were dry, others were completely wet, and some corners had damp patches. For this reason neither of our riders felt good on the bike and both experienced the same issues they encountered before. Maverick and Valentino qualified on the third and fourth row respectively. For sure, we still have work to do, especially under these circumstances. We expect tomorrow to be dry but, regardless of the weather, it will be a hard race. We aim to make another step in the warm-up tomorrow morning.

Maverick Viñales

Maverick Viñales

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Rider

Today was difficult. We always suffer in the wet and at the moment we are not on the same level as our main rivals. We have to keep working on the bike's set-up and keep improving in the wet. We have work to do during this season, in order to be strong - but I know we can improve a lot, so we will just continue to work on improving the grip level, to be more competitive, and we'll see tomorrow. We'll hope for a dry race, that would suit us much better.

Valentino Rossi

Valentino Rossi

Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Rider

It was a difficult day for me, because in these conditions - when you have to go out on the wet tyre, but the asphalt is becoming dry - I'm in a lot of trouble. I can't push, because every time I try to push more I feel the front close. At the end of the qualifying I tried to do a smooth lap, I was able to improve my time, but anyway it was not enough to be with the top guys. We have to work, but especially we have to hope that tomorrow will be full dry or full wet, because then I feel quite comfortable, but in these half-and-half conditions it will be very difficult. My preference is full dry, for sure, because for me with the full dry I have a good pace to make a good race.