Vinales tops timesheets in pre-season testing

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Maverick Vinales

Bengaluru, November 15: Maverick Vinales topped the timesheets on the opening day of the two-day MotoGP pre-season tests at Valencia.

At the Circuito de la Comunitat, the Movistar Yamaha rider made a flying start to the 2018 pre-season.

Using the same bike which ho rode during the Valencia Grand Prix on Sunday (November 12), the Italian started the proceedings slowly before firing up the engine to full speed.

The Spaniard set the fastest time of the day, a 1'30.189s, and held on to the top position as he finished two tenths clear of Johann Zarco on Monster Yamaha Tech 3.

Newly-crowned world champion Marc Marquez of Repsol Honda finished third just ahead of Vinales' team-mate and MotoGP legend Valentino Rossi.

"On the same bike that I rode during the Valencia GP weekend I felt much better. It felt like I've come back to my usual form. I was pushing on every single lap like and I felt like it was my Yamaha again. The smiles returned and that's very important," said Vinales, who had finished third in the FIM MotoGP World Championship.

Just before midday there was a dramatic crash for Rossi at Turn 10, with the No.46 soon on his feet and walking over to look at the bike. Back to the pits soon after, the Italian great was unhurt and headed back out.

Jack Miller of Octo Pramac Racing was the standout debutant as he rode a Ducati for the first time, going fifth fastest.

The testing resumes at 10am local time on Wednesday (November 15).

Story first published: Wednesday, November 15, 2017, 11:09 [IST]
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