Rossi: Yamaha working harder since MotoGP summer break

Valentino Rossi feels that "something moved" within the Yamaha MotoGP team during the summer break in its bid to close the gap to its rival manufacturers

Rossi: Yamaha working harder since MotoGP summer break

Rossi had a torrid end to the first half of the 2019 campaign, as he retired from three races in succession and then finished only eighth at the Sachsenring.

But the Italian returned from the summer break with slightly improved form by finishing sixth and fourth at Brno and the Red Bull Ring respectively.

Rossi said in Austria that Yamaha has changed for the better during the summer break and was able to "make a step" in its key problem area of acceleration.

"We are quite happy, especially because it looks like the second half of the season started in a better way because the first hlaf we had [was] very negative," said Rossi, who is back to being the top Yamaha in the standings after beating Maverick Vinales to fourth at the Red Bull Ring.

"Looks like something moved in Yamaha, and Yamaha started to work harder and better to improve the bike.

"When we arrived here, Friday we understand that we made a step with electronics and acceleration and we can be more competitive because we always suffer in this track.

"This is the most important thing. For sure we have a lot of work to do because especially [Andrea] Dovizioso and [Marc] Marquez are faster than us, but it's a good way to start."

Takahiro Sumi, who replaced Kouji Tsuya last year as Yamaha's MotoGP group leader, said that the "turning point" was last season's Austrian GP, when the team publicly apologised to its riders after a disastrous qualifying.

"After the disastrous season of last year, especially we struggled on this track [Red Bull Ring] and we were facing a critical moment here," said Sumi.

"It was our turning point to change. Before changing the bike, we had to change ourselves to think about how to develop the bike.

"Now [we] start to change small things, but many [things]. Still, the bike is not so different but in the Yamaha headquarters the activities now changed.

"We understand now we are challengers and we are still in the crisis moment."

Rossi agreed with Sumi that Yamaha has been working better this year, which makes him "optimistic" for the latter part of the season.

"It is very interesting was Sumi-san said, I agree with him," said the 40-year-old.

"It is not just 2018, but already [from] 2017 we don't work well, strong enough and we don't work in the right areas. The gap with the opponents became bigger.

"Looks like this year different things changes, also [wit] people and the organisation inside. Yamaha put more effort in.

"About feeling and about words, I am optimistic because it looks like something [has] moved, but now need time and unfortunately, maybe I don't have a lot of time [left] so I try always to push.

"We need the result so we need to improve, but it is positive because already we try the first prototype of the bike [at the post-Brrno test] and I think we start to work in a good way."

shares
comments
Ducati: Fixing long-term MotoGP handling issue takes trial and error

Previous article

Ducati: Fixing long-term MotoGP handling issue takes trial and error

Next article

2015 Moto3 champion Danny Kent loses BSB ride over knife offence

2015 Moto3 champion Danny Kent loses BSB ride over knife offence
Load comments
How Ducati’s Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future Plus

How Ducati’s Aragon MotoGP win harks to its past and its future

Duelling against Marc Marquez at the Aragon Grand Prix, Francesco Bagnaia came out on top to secure a long overdue MotoGP victory. As Marquez likened Bagnaia to a Ducati title contender of old, it appears the Italian rider could finally start to fight for wins on a more regular basis

MotoGP
Sep 13, 2021
Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble Plus

Why Dovizioso is more of a temporary fix than a Yamaha gamble

OPINION: The return of Andrea Dovizioso to the grid at Misano will be an interesting subplot to the remainder of the 2021 MotoGP season. But the circumstances that have led to the former Ducati rider ending his sabbatical point to his signing being one more of convenience than a long-term commitment

MotoGP
Sep 8, 2021
Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP Plus

Why the British GP was a triumph for MotoGP

OPINION: The 2021 British Grand Prix was a historic day for MotoGP. At the centre of it was Aleix Espargaro on the Aprilia after securing its first podium in the modern MotoGP era. It was something of a full-circle moment that highlighted just how far MotoGP has come in the last decade

MotoGP
Aug 30, 2021
Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home Plus

Why Silverstone should be regarded as MotoGP's rightful UK home

OPINION: Many of the UK’s MotoGP fans would prefer Donington Park to host the British GP beyond the expiry of Silverstone's current deal. But the circuit's fast, flowing circuit provides the best racing and should be regarded as its best bet for the foreseeable future

MotoGP
Aug 26, 2021
How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge Plus

How MotoGP's record smasher is facing his toughest challenge

The 2020 MotoGP season was an utterly enthralling affair, but few would argue with you if thought it the world championship was a poorer place without its biggest star Marc Marquez. In an exclusive interview, he explains the challenges he's faced in his comeback from injury and what he makes of the current MotoGP landscape

MotoGP
Aug 23, 2021
The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP Plus

The other Austria 'shock' with major repercussions in MotoGP

The headlines after MotoGP's Austrian GP were naturally dominated by Brad Binder's heroics on slicks in the rain. But although seventh was, on the face of it, a fairly average result in the context of his season, that Fabio Quartararo was in contention for victory before the rain at Yamaha's worst venue should sound alarm bells for his rivals

MotoGP
Aug 17, 2021
Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales in MotoGP - but won't fix his big problem Plus

Why Aprilia is a good bet for Vinales in MotoGP - but won't fix his big problem

The prelude to Maverick Vinales' move to Aprilia has been his tortured exit from Yamaha. But the Spanish rider must put allegations of sabotage, suspensions and unwanted personnel changes aside once he embarks upon his new journey, while Aprilia must find a way to get Vinales firing on all cylinders once again

MotoGP
Aug 16, 2021
The rider dilemma facing Petronas SRT for MotoGP 2022 Plus

The rider dilemma facing Petronas SRT for MotoGP 2022

The final pieces of the 2022 rider market have yet to be finalised as Petronas SRT faces several obstacles in replacing the retiring Valentino Rossi and Yamaha factory-bound Franco Morbidelli. SRT’s preferred option has been locked into a KTM deal he doesn’t want, while it’s other target is managed by Rossi himself and wanted at his VR46 team

MotoGP
Aug 10, 2021