Fabio Quartararo and Alex Rins breathe a sigh of relief in Mugello: Yamaha updates work

Signs of life from Yamaha! During the MotoGP training in Mugello, Alex Rins and Fabio Quartararo made people sit up and take notice and drove competitive times. Rins once again made it straight into Q2 and even set the second fastest time behind leader Francesco Bagnaia.

But where does Yamaha’s upswing come from? Is the M1 actually better, is it just the Autodromo Internazionale in Mugello that suits the bike better, or is it just the advantage gained from holding the private test two weeks ago?

Alex Rins in P2: lap was peppered with mistakes

“Of course, the test we had here helped us today,” explained Alex Rins in his media round on Friday afternoon. “But it only helped in the first 15 laps.” After that, according to Rins, the competition had already closed the gap again. The fact that both Yamaha riders were able to set fast lap times in the afternoon is also due to the new developments. Quartararo had already spoken in Barcelona of a light at the end of the tunnel, which the new aerodynamic fairing brought.

The upward trend was confirmed in Mugello, which also made Rins feel positive. “We’re doing a good job at the moment. In Barcelona I was also fast over one lap. But here in Mugello I feel strong even on used tires. In Barcelona, ​​Rins achieved his best qualifying result for Yamaha so far with eighth place on the grid – can he top that a week later?

“I pushed 100 percent today and set an incredible lap time,” said the Spaniard, delighted with his best lap in training. With his time of 1:45.326 minutes, he was only 0.273 seconds off the best time in second place. “To be honest, the lap wasn’t really perfect, I made a few mistakes. We can maybe get a few tenths out of it, but not much more.”

Even a crash in turn one could not stop Alex Rins, Photo: LAT Images
Even a crash in turn one could not stop Alex Rins, Photo: LAT Images

Fabio Quartararo: Missed Q2 due to lack of slipstream

His teammate Fabio Quartararo, on the other hand, is looking a little gloomy after training in Mugello. In eleventh place, he narrowly missed out on a direct Q2 ticket with a gap of 0.019 seconds. The reason why it wasn’t enough for the Frenchman is quickly found. “We needed a driver we could have followed, but unfortunately we were all alone. That is of course very frustrating because we were so close to Q2.”

But we know what we were missing to be fast. The good thing is that we were only a little more than a tenth of a second behind P3,” Quartararo analyzed. The former MotoGP world champion also recognized that there was still room for improvement. But compared to his teammate, this was also quickly recognized. “During the test, he was [Alex Rins] already faster than me and today as well, we still have to analyse why that is so.”

On a fast lap, Quartararo was once again outdone by his teammate, Photo: LAT Images
On a fast lap, Quartararo was once again outdone by his teammate, Photo: LAT Images

Fabio Quartararo: The next few months should bring improvement

Nevertheless, the training in Mugello brought positive findings. The new aerodynamic setup does not only bring performance advantages. “The bike already feels much better than in the test because we were able to do more laps, which is very good. I can now ride the bike much more naturally. It’s not just the pure performance, I can now feel the bike more easily, riding is much more pleasant, even though the weight has not decreased. We can certainly improve even further in the next few months,” explained Quartararo.

Rins, who is in the garage next to Quartararo, shared his opinion. “The bike works a little better here with the new fairing because it gives us a little more cornering speed in the fast corners. But we are still a long way from finishing races at the top. So we will continue to work on that.”

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