Team Suzuki Press Office - June 26.

Grid positions for DutchGP:

Alex Rins: 7th - 1’32.597 (+ 0.783)
Joan Mir: 10th - 1’32.748 (+ 0.934)

The rain stayed away from the TT Circuit of Assen on Saturday morning, meaning Team Suzuki Ecstar’s riders, Joan Mir and Alex Rins, would need to fight to defend their positions in the Top 10. They managed this very well, putting together strings of quick laps and finishing FP3 in fifth and sixth respectively, giving them passage to Q2.

In FP4 the duo, happy with their set-ups, were able to try the various tyre options available and run short race simulations. They once again demonstrated competitive pace, with Rins holding the Top 3 for the majority of the session. In the end, Mir was fifth and Rins seventh.

The Q2 session saw a determined Rins and Mir head out on track as soon as pit lane opened. Rins opted for the soft-soft combination, and Mir the medium-soft and they set about bringing their lap times down. Using the usual ‘2 exits’ strategy, they improved significantly in their final runs, but failed to capture the optimum fast lap feel. A late crash without consequence at Turn 8 for Rins while on a personal best lap cost him a few grid spots and in the end the GSX-RR mounted pair took seventh and 10th for tomorrow’s 26 lap GP.

Alex Rins:

“Luckily I’m fine after the crash, it was a small off and my arm didn’t take any more damage. It was a shame because I was aiming for the second row and I was very close to it when I went down, but the sessions have been good today, especially FP3 & FP4, and I’ve enjoyed the feeling with the bike. I’ve tried the different tyre options and worked quite a lot towards tomorrow, but so far we’re still not sure what we’ll use for the race. The Yamahas are very strong, but I think I’m able to fight in the lead group if all goes well.”

Joan Mir:

“Overall the day has been positive, but I’m a bit disappointed about the qualifying as usual, because that’s the lowest position I’ve been in all weekend and my time in Q2 was better than my time in FP3 where I was Top 5. But it’s like this, and now we need to focus on improving on our qualifying performance because the bike has good potential and this track could be good for us because our race pace is decent. I will need to fight hard tomorrow from this grid position to get myself in a good place and finish as high as possible. I’ve done it before so I know I can do it again, but it’s always tougher and more unpredictable when you have to come through the pack, so it will be difficult.”

Ken Kawauchi - Technical Manager:

“It’s mixed feelings for us today. This morning both riders did a great job, both of them got into the Top 10 and Q2. Likewise, in FP4 our race pace was very good. But we expected more in qualifying, we were hoping for the second row at least, but unfortunately they will start 7th and 10th which is disappointing for all of us. However, our race pace is quite good and I’m looking forward to seeing what will happen tomorrow.”

MOTUL TT ASSEN - Qualifying Classification:

1. M. VIÑALES - Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP - 01:31.814
2. F. QUARTARARO - Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP - 01:31.885 - +0.071
3. F. BAGNAIA - Ducati Lenovo Team - 01:32.116 - +0.302
4. T. NAKAGAMI - LCR Honda IDEMITSU - 01:32.314 - +0.500
5. J. ZARCO - Pramac Racing - 01:32.394 - +0.580
6. M. OLIVEIRA - Red Bull KTM Factory Racing - 01:32.450 - +0.636
7. A. RINS - Team SUZUKI ECSTAR - 01:32.597 - +0.783
8. J. MILLER - Ducati Lenovo Team - 01:32.609 - +0.795
9. A. ESPARGARO - Aprilia Racing Team Gresini - 01:32.666 - +0.852
10. J. MIR - Team SUZUKI ECSTAR - 01:32.748 - +0.934
11. P. ESPARGARO - Repsol Honda Team - 01:32.830 - +1.016
12. V. ROSSI - Petronas Yamaha SRT - 01:32.919 - +1.105
13. I. LECUONA - Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing - 01:32.724 - Q1
14. J. MARTIN - Pramac Racing - 01:32.850 - Q1
15. L. SAVADORI - Aprilia Racing Team Gresini - 01:33.258 - Q1
16. A. MARQUEZ - LCR Honda CASTROL - 01:33.288 - Q1
17. L. MARINI - SKY VR46 Avintia - 01:33.321 - Q1
18. D. PETRUCCI - Tech 3 KTM Factory Racing - 01:33.378 - Q1
19. E. BASTIANINI - Avintia Esponsorama - 01:33.404 - Q1
20. M. MARQUEZ - Repsol Honda Team - 01:33.477 - Q1
21. B. BINDER - Red Bull KTM Factory Racing - 01:33.597 - Q1
22. G. GERLOFF - Petronas Yamaha SRT - 01:33.739 - Q1


For more stories about Alex Rins, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

For more stories about Joan Mir, Click Here. For photos, Click Here.

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