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Rins Hot In The 2019 MotoGP Title Hunt

May 062019

Three weeks after the ecstasy of his first MotoGP win around the long and demanding curves of the Circuit of The Americas, Suzuki’s Alex Rins further established his case for the ’19 MotoGP crown with a resilient second position at Jerez last weekend.

The Gran Premio de España was sun-splashed, unpredictable and a worthy new chapter to the European stint of the FIM World Championship campaign. The resurfaced Jerez layout was grippy but disorientating for some of the fastest riders on two wheels. World Champ Marc Marquez might have triumphed without much of a challenge but the likes of Rins, Petronas Yamaha’s Franco Morbidelli, Andrea Dovizioso and Monster Energy Yamaha’s Maverick Viñales kept the dispute behind the Honda on lively terms.

Rins – starting from a lacklustre grid position of ninth place – was resolute to defy Viñales, and Morbidelli (together with 20 year old teammate Fabio Quartararo) were also protagonists. “We did an incredible race, starting on the fourth row,” Rins reasoned. “Before the start all the team and I knew our rhythm was the same as Marc. I was quite comfortable but I needed to try and overtake very fast and I lost a lot of time with Dovizioso. The Ducati bike brakes hard and accelerates really hard. Anyway, step by step I overtook riders and did a lot of laps at the front waiting to see if he [Marquez] made any mistakes but anyway second position was incredible for us.”

A second trophy for Rins’ apartment in Andorra carried the bonus that he sits just one point behind Marquez at the peak of the MotoGP standings. He was chased onto the box by countryman Viñales, who deflected the attention of Dovizoso and appeared in the top three for the first time in 2019 as teammate Valentino Rossi made it to 6th.

 

“There are many things to improve and many ways to work [but] the confidence we have is good…so being here on the podium is good as well because Jerez is a track I really struggle at and it is one of the worst of the calendar,” Maverick said. “So it was very important to stay in front of the Ducatis as they push so much at the end of the races. I tried to keep them back and pushed my best.”

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