Valentino Rossi: Yamaha MotoGP bike "in trouble" at Jerez

Valentino Rossi said the Yamaha MotoGP team is "in trouble" at the Spanish Grand Prix after ending Jerez Friday practice only 16th fastest overall

Valentino Rossi: Yamaha MotoGP bike "in trouble" at Jerez

Rossi was 18th and 14th in the two Friday practices and was nearly eight tenths of a second slower than pacesetter Danilo Petrucci's Ducati.

Jerez has been a difficult circuit for Yamaha lately, but Rossi said that there were hopes the 2019-spec M1, and the resurfaced asphalt, would lead to better from this time around.

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But Rossi admitted that he was "not fast", and that his problems were a general poor feeling with the bike rather than a specific issue.

"It was a difficult day," said Rossi. "We know that here in Jerez we suffer a bit, because in the last years we were not very fast.

"We hoped also that we can be better than last year because of the modified bike [for 2019] that helped us in the first three races.

"Also we have the new asphalt, so we hoped that we can be more competitive but the day was difficult.

"We tried some different things in the afternoon but I was not fast, my pace is not fantastic, I am quite low in the ranking, we are a bit in trouble.

"We are not strong. It looks like that marriage between the M1, tyres and the track is not fantastic.

"I don't have a particular problem but in general. We tried to modify the balance of the bike because I suffered in general, also in the [corner] entry for example I am not fantastic.

"It's not just in acceleration. We tried to modify something but unfortunately it doesn't work."

Rossi's team-mate Maverick Vinales ended Friday in fifth but was similarly displeased with the bike.

"The problem has been the same for two years, it's the same in every race. I have to brake very carefully," he said.

"The engine braking doesn't behave properly. Jerez is one of the worst tracks for us.

"In electronics we suffer a lot. We have to keep working and find a way to make it work. It's very important for me to make the bike work with my style."

When asked if a poor performance at Jerez could mean another season of constant struggles, Rossi said: "For sure if we are able to be strong here, it's very positive but if we struggle here, is negative [only] for this weekend.

"For me it's not the final answer. Maybe we struggle in Jerez, and we go to Le Mans and the bike is good. Everything is not finished here.

"To continue to fight in the championship [fight] we need to take some points anyway."


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