Viñales enjoyed a positive start to his San Marino GP campaign. He set a 1’35.715s first flying lap for provisional second place. He gradually improved his time, setting a 1‘33.599s at the end of that same run, which kept him inside the top 3 for the entire duration of the session. With a good lap in the bag, the Yamaha man used the remaining FP1 time for two further runs in which he improved in sector one, two, and four. He ended the session in third place, 0.446s from first.
The Spaniard kept his usual focus in the afternoon. Showing the same competitive pace he had in the morning, he took a top-2 spot early on in the session again and then continued working on his bike‘s set-up. Thanks to this tweaking, he was able to post three 1‘32s laps in the last-minute showdown. He dropped a 1‘32.775s lap for first place both in the FP2 and the combined timesheets, with a 0.057s advantage over his closest rival.
The grandstands of the Misano track were already filled with fans eager to see their hero Rossi in action. However, the Doctor had a lot on his plate in the morning, focusing on confirming the feedback on testing items used at the Misano Test. He clocked multiple 1‘34s laps, but also had five of them cancelled. His best lap, set on run two, a 1‘34.182s, put him in ninth place, with a 1.029s margin to first.
The Italian had the goal to get higher up the rankings in the afternoon, for a solid placement within the combined free practice top 10. Motivated by the cheers of the fans, both in the paddock and from the grandstands, he found a way to climb up the FP2 order. He saved the best for his last run, posting a 1‘33.470s on his first flying lap on soft-soft tyres in the final minutes of the session. The lap put him in fourth place in the combined and FP2 results, 0.695s from today‘s fastest time, set by his team-mate.
After today’s positive results, the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP Team take this moment to reminisce on a special race that happened 55 years ago today. On 13 September 1964, British racing icon Phil Read won his fifth 250cc race of the season aboard the Yamaha RD56, at the Monza circuit in Italy, taking Yamaha to their first World Championship victory.