It was a full-on first day at the Gran Premio de España for the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team. Maverick Viñales and Valentino Rossi tried a new bottom fender package (referred to as “the spoon”) and took 6th and 16th position respectively overall.
Eager to improve acceleration, Viñales wasted no time to get to work. The Spaniard was excited to see if the new track surface, with improved grip-level, would play to his advantage, and it did. He was in his element and set a best time of 1’38.112s, 0.191s from first, good for third place.
The home rider took some time adjusting his bike’s setting in the afternoon when the sun came out. Once comfortable, he set a 1‘38.556s. Viñales was ready to push some more in his next stint, but then a red flag halted the session. The FP2 was restarted a few minutes later, and in the remaining 2m42s the Yamaha rider improved his FP2 time to a 1‘38.241s, for fifth place, 0.332s from the top. His faster morning time earned him sixth place in the combined FP rankings, 0.203s from first.
Rossi put in the work this morning. He used the entire session to adjust his bike’s settings. Without giving much regard to clocking a hot lap, he finished the 45-minute outing in 18th position with a best lap of 1’39.380s, 1.459s from the front.
The Doctor continued his set-up progress in the afternoon, adapting it to the much higher temperatures. Though he couldn‘t find the right feeling, he put his head down halfway through the session after he had fresh medium tyres fitted under his Yamaha. He immediately moved up nine places to provisional P7 on his first flying lap, but soon proceedings were temporarily stopped due to track conditions. After the restart, he bettered his time to a 1‘38.681s, but didn’t improve his placement, ending FP2 in 14th place. He finished 16th in the combined FP results, 0.772s from first.