Maverick Vinales of the Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team on board his No.12 machine did a fantastic job to carve his way through the field to take victory in the opening MotoGP event of the season in the desert in Doha.
Viñales and Yamaha’s strengths in the middle of the corners were clear to see, and Turn 10 was once more was the chosen passing place for Top Gun. For the first time, the race leader wasn’t Pecco as Viñales struck on Lap 15, but the top eight riders were still covered by just 2.3 seconds. With Pol Espargaro (Repsol Honda Team) in P9 just 3.5 seconds from the lead as well, could the number 12 Yamaha pull away from the group?
Speaking following the race, Vinales commented saying:
Honestly I felt unbelievable. Actually the start didn’t go so well, I had a lot of wheelie. So it’s something we need to work on. But after that I felt the potential, I was taking everything with calm and saving the tyres for a good moment. I tried to be smart and calm, and chose the right place to push. Finally I opened a gap and I was trying to control the tyre and manage the power. Overall, so good. It was a fantastic weekend, just to say thank you to my really close family, now my wife… as you know we’re expecting a baby and you know, these results are amazing, everything is good and we’re really blessed. Just thank you.