SUZUKI’S HOME SOIL IN JAPAN FOR ROUND 16
Following a short break of 10 days, MotoGP is back on track this weekend in Japan. Round 16 will be a special one for many teams in the paddock, including Team SUZUKI ECSTAR who count this as their home GP.
Located almost 400km from Suzuki’s base in Hamamatsu, Motegi circuit is a classic on the calendar, and in 2019 it will celebrate 20 years since first hosting a MotoGP race. With its vibrant atmosphere, passionate fans, and wide range of racing-related facilities including a riding school and a museum, Twin Ring Motegi remains one of the most popular stops of the year.
Alex Rins managed to recoup five positions from his grid spot at the Thai GP, finishing 5th and helping to consolidate his third place in the championship standings. However, the Spaniard was slightly disappointed with this result and he is hungry to return to the top positions in front of Suzuki’s workers in Motegi.
Joan Mir showed impressive and consistent pace throughout the weekend in Buriram, despite never having previously ridden a MotoGP bike around the Thai track. Mir took 7th place and engaged in some good battles. With his confidence and fitness building all the time, he his keen to prove his pace once again this weekend with the support of the Japanese fans.
A perfect example of a ‘stop & go’ circuit, Twin Ring Motegi is demanding on both bike and rider, with a lot of gear changes and hard braking zones throughout the 4.8km layout.
Davide Brivio – Team Manager:
“Motegi is quite a good circuit for us, and we like the track layout too. The competition this year is really high, and we’re trying to fight at every race to get back on the podium and to maintain Alex’s third spot in the championship. Alex, Joan, and the team always give our best, and especially in Japan we’d like to get great results for all the people working so hard in the factory.”
“I have good memories from Motegi, and it’s always a special place to go because we get a lot of support from the fans, and we also have meetings with the staff and bosses who are working for Suzuki in Japan. I really want to do well this weekend and give everyone another reason to smile!”
“I hope in Japan I can take another step forward. I’m excited to start the weekend because it’s really nice to be at Suzuki’s home circuit. I have had a bit of bad luck in the past in Motegi, but I really like the track and I hope to put that behind me and have a strong finish.”
TECHNICAL HIGHLIGHTS OF MOTEGI
Frankie Carchedi – Joan Mir’s Crew Chief:
“Motegi is all about stop and start! It’s very demanding on the brakes and the tyres, especially as the track and air temperatures are often high. When you have hard braking into corners, you usually have hard acceleration out of them, so anti-wheelie from the aerodynamic package makes a big difference. A lot of the corners are only first or second gear, which can make tyre wear an issue; as you accelerate out you can encounter wheel spin. The base of our bike is very strong, but we will tweak a few things to ensure the best possible performance here. Here’s hoping it’ll be a good home GP!”