SportMotoGPViñales: "As soon as I got on the Aprilia...

Viñales: "As soon as I got on the Aprilia I saw my potential"

The Catalan broke his contract with Yamaha last month after being suspended for sabotaging his bike at the Styrian Grand Prix . Viñales had already made the decision to leave the tuning fork brand a year before his contract expired, after the relationship between the two deteriorated drastically throughout 2021.

Aprilia took the opportunity to sign Viñales for the next season. The #12 entered the RS-GP for the first time in a two-day test at Misano this past Tuesday and Wednesday, and the Noale brand confirmed that it will debut with the team at the next Aragon GP.

After the test, he had a meeting with various media and when asked by if his debut with Aprilia had been the happiest moment of this year in MotoGP, Viñales replied: “Probably in my life, [I have never had] a moment in which I am happiest, because after five years [at Yamaha] there have been ups and downs and I did not understand many things.

“In the end I said ‘what’s up’, but as soon as I got on the Aprilia I saw my potential, I know what I’m capable of doing and it was nice to get on fast because I have the opportunity to do six races.”

“That’s much better than doing just five days of testing, and I’ll try to prepare well with Aleix [Espargaró] for the 2022 [bike], which is very important to me.”

(Before reading on, click on this link or on the image to see the photos of Maverick Viñales with Aprilia)

Viñales admitted on Wednesday that he was “nervous” about his debut with Aprilia, especially since the geometry of the RS-GP’s V4 engine is completely different from the in-line four that it has had since 2015 at Suzuki and Yamaha.

The Spaniard said he was surprised by how quickly he adapted to Aprilia’s V4 engine, while admitting he hadn’t expected to test and race so soon.

“Honestly, I expected to be home until November waiting to get on the bike for the test,” he said. “But this opportunity is made in the first place because I am leaving [Yamaha], and because Aprilia gave me the opportunity.”

“Basically, what makes me happy is that all the guys are working very hard, their enthusiasm is great. Also, coming off a podium finish [at Silverstone with Espargaró], it’s the best time to join the team, to try to give them feedback “.

“Aleix and [Lorenzo] Savadori have done an incredible job, because they have been very fast and the bike works well. It has surprised me a lot because the adaptation to the bike has been quite fast. Basically what I have to change is the way of braking , it’s a little different. It’s a big learning process because the way of braking with the Aprilia is totally different [to the Yamaha].”

“I will need laps, also Aleix is a very strong braker so I will need to learn a bit from him how he brakes hard, but I think that will come with confidence.”

Viñales said that he knew he wanted to race the Aprilia in Aragón “as soon as I did three stints with the bike” on Tuesday.

During his first encounter with the media as an Aprilia rider, Viñales was unable to discuss his break with Yamaha , but did say that it was “fair” for the brand to let him join the team because “everyone has to have the opportunity to leave things in the past” settled.

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