On the eve of the third GP of the season, Franco Morbidelli is ready to race at the sharp end aboard his Petronas Yamaha M1. The Italo-Brazilian had trouble during the opening rounds in Qatar, but he hasn’t lost his motivation ahead of the upcoming race at the rollercoaster Portimão track, where he reached the podium in 2020.

“We start with a clean sheet in Portimão”, explains number 21. “The two Qatar rounds were complicated and we weren’t able to achieve the results we hoped for, so I’m happy to head to a track like Portimão, where we were very competitive at the end of last year”.

“The basic bike set-up will be more or less the same as it was over the last weekends, but it should work better in Portugal. My motivation is still high, also after seeing the performance of the official Yamaha riders, who actually push me to work even harder to obtain better conditions and greater consideration from the manufacturer”, continues 21.

"Pleased about Yamaha’s counter-measures"

As for the problems in Qatar, “Morbido” is quick to assure us: Yamaha has answered all my questions, both after the first races and once we got here. I’m pleased with the counter-measures taken because that confirms that they are working hard for me too”.

“Personally, I can only say that I’ve worked hard, physically and mentally, over the last ten days and will aim to do my best with what I have available”, concludes the 2020 runner-up.

Translated by Heather Watson

Portugal GP, manufacturer stats