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MotoGP Silverstone
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0.013: Rins shaves it in British Grand Prix thriller

Aug 262019

The turbulence of the weather and the memories of cancellation in 2018 were firmly forgotten at Silverstone as one of the oldest and most historic venues and events on the MotoGP slate bounced back with zeal for the twelfth round of the ’19 series.

Sunshine and a resurfaced track provided a splendid backdrop for one of the all-time British Grand Prix classics as Suzuki’s Alex Rins swooped on the fiercely fast Woodcote corner to beat world champ Marc Marquez by less than half a bike length at the flag. It echoed the iconic dice between two titans of Grand Prix – Barry Sheene and Kenny Roberts – exactly forty years earlier around the same course and decided on the same curve.

For Rins it represented a u-turn in form and results after a sticky period in the middle of the campaign where he dropped away from world title contention and providing an even stiffer challenge to Marquez. The Catalan was left disbelieving after being denied victory on the final bend for the second Grand Prix in a row.

“Today has been unbelievable,” said Rins, summing up the conviction of many of the watching spectators. “I won in Austin, beating Valentino. And now I’ve won here, beating Marc. These guys are very fast and are ‘legends’ of the sport. I knew it would be difficult to beat Marc today, but I really wanted to try, and it was fantastic to do it. In a couple of the sectors he was faster than me, but I could make it up in some other areas. But towards the end of the race I felt I had better pace than him, and I told myself that I must go for it and take the chance, I saw the opportunity and I made it happen.

“I tried my best and I think we got the maximum and maybe even more from our bike today,” MV said after lapping the fourth quickest layout in MotoGP. “There are long straights here and at this track it‘s really about the engine, so we're happy with third. We missed a bit of traction and top speed. In many corners I was much faster, but in others I was surviving the best I could.”

 

Valentino – who looked so swift through practice and qualification and was appearing again in front of expectant British fans – was disappointed to miss out on the top three and now stares at a nine race streak without any silverware. “We expected more from this race,” he said after classifying fourth for the second race on the bounce. “It‘s a shame, we had expected to fight for the podium.”

“We were working a lot on some areas to understand some things that maybe we didn't get right in the previous races,” he said carefully. “Finally I think we understood a bit more, and we made a bit of a step back.”

 

“[we are] First independent team. It's a great point to start from to go into the next races with quite a good knowledge of the machine and of what I need and what we need to be fast.”

 

Further exploration will not be far away. MotoGP gathers for a private test at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli in eastern Italy this week; the same stage will host round thirteen of MotoGP in three weekends time.

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