Yamaha MotoGP rider Maverick Vinales says his Jerez podium, which felt "like a victory", was all down to a rare strong start.
The Spanish GP marked the first race in 2019 - and only the third race since the start of last year - at which Vinales gained a position on the opening lap, the Spaniard going from fifth to fourth.
Aided by a mechanical failure for Fabio Quartararo up ahead, Vinales held off Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci to record his best-ever finish at Jerez in the premier class.
"Actually I think the result is about the start, we did many mistakes in the previous races where I felt even more great than at Jerez," Vinales said.
"But anyway it was very important to feel the confidence to start well, to be there in the first laps.
"Being on the podium in Jerez for me feels even like a victory because it's a track I really struggle at, for me it's one of the worst on the calendar, so it was very important to stay in front of the Ducatis, because also they were pushing so much at the end of the race."
Vinales said his crew had been focusing intensely on the start and the first laps of the race, but also stressed he had already managed a decent getaway in Austin only for it to be undone by a jump-start penalty.
"We worked a lot on the start this weekend, trying to find a method to be more consistent on the start and finally I think we found it.
"Also in Austin I started well - I just moved in the last second because of the engagement on the clutch, and it was a shame because at that race I felt very good."
Vinales' Jerez podium lifted him to seventh in the standings, albeit now 40 points behind race winner and reigning champion Marc Marquez.
"The first two races, our result, it's been really difficult," he said.
"Because the potential we had was much more than what we were doing.
"But anyway at Jerez I didn't expect to be on the podium, it's a track I really struggle all the years I've been.
"Yamaha is doing a great job but still there is a lot to improve. I still have to understand the bike, I'm riding quite aggressively on the bike, stop-and-go, maybe it's not the best riding style for the bike, so I also have to improve, not only the bike."