Maverick Vinales is ready to take on the 2021 challenge, or rather the fight for the MotoGP title aboard his factory Yamaha M1. During today's official team presentation, the Spaniard has clearly stated that this is his year. A year in which to score results, strengthen the team and aim for the title.
We start from 2020
“Last year was a crazy year for us all, but now we put that behind us and focus on what we have to come. With the Sepang tests cancelled, I must wait a little longer to ride my M1 again. It’s a long winter break, so I'm feeling impatient but in a positive sense”. A winter break that Vinales used to get married: “I’ve found the right person and so decided to do it”.
The Losail season-opener
The 2021 season will start with the Qatar tests before continuing with the first two races, also in Doha. Will that be a good or a bad thing? “I’m not too worried about Qatar – adds the Spaniard – because it’s quite a good track for us. With the tests and two races it will be crazy though. We’ll get a lot of laps in so that we’re prepared and can find the right set-up. Once we get to Portimao, a track where we didn’t go so well last year, I’ll understand more. Morbidelli went well there. I think the best thing is to focus on the season as a whole and not only on the first race, so that we can be fighting at the front”.
“We need to be a single unit”
And while Maverick’s 2021 goal is clear, so to is his work plan: “I think it’s important for Yamaha to be united, because in recent years that’s not always been the case. With all the guys working on the team, around twenty of us, we need to be united. This is the most important thing for me, to have a good relationship with everyone. Yamaha now has the chance to have a united team, to look ahead and work in the same direction with both riders. We need to work together so that we don’t find ourselves doing well one week and poorly the next. So first we need to solve the issues we have. We’re fast and have much of what we need to be up front and winning. We’re just missing a few details. My team believes in me and my riding and at the same time I believe in them and the project, so I want to give it my all”.
“Fabio and I have the same goal”
Vinales closes by mentioning team-mate, no longer Valentino Rossi but Fabio Quartararo: “There’s mutual respect with Fabio. He’s very fast, especially over the flying lap, and so we’ll be rivals on track. Our common goal though is to support Yamaha. We’ll compete on track but, once back in the garage, the important thing is that we focus on improving the bike”.
Translated by Heather Watson