MotoGP Catalunya: Bagnaia: Yamaha proves that “top speed isn’t everything” | MotoGP
It’s also the direction Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia is looking for, emphasizing handling over top speed and meaning the Italian isn’t sure whether to ride a new fairing brought to Monday’s Catalunya test. .
Bagnaia, knocked out at the first corner of Sunday’s race, came back to complete 80 laps of the Barcelona circuit, his best time just 0.004s behind Yamaha winner Fabio Quartararo.
“I tested different elements and the biggest one was the fairing,” Bagnaia said. “The fairing worked pretty well. I’m pretty happy with it, but it’s just for testing for now. I don’t know if we’ll see it this year or not.
“It can help us not to lose too much maneuverability, but to have more top speed. So something that could help.
“But you can also think that this year I prefer to have less top speed, but more maneuverability. That’s the main thing now. Yamaha is the perfect example.
The 2021 title runner-up, who is now down 66 points from reigning world champion Quartararo, added:
“Right now they [Yamaha and Quartararo] have more maneuverability and it is also clear that top speed is not everything. This year we have improved a lot [but] we still need more grip like Yamaha. So we are working on it. »
While Bagnaia is willing to sacrifice some of the Desmosedici’s record top speed to reduce Yamaha’s cornering advantage, at least in the hands of Quartararo, the Frenchman (who scored 45 out of 50 despite the long straights in Mugello and Barcelona) looks from the other direction, urging Yamaha to find more top speed for 2023.
Jack Miller: “Like a different bike”
Bagnaia’s team-mate Jack Miller – who struggled with inconsistent tire performance over the Grand Prix weekend, including a crash to 14th in the race – was back in shape with the sixth-fastest lap (+0.295s) to the test.
“Much better today. Like riding a different bike,” he said.
“We swapped the rear wheels and it was fantastic. I rode the exact same bike I rode in the race this morning and was consistently doing 39s. Then once the tires got a few laps they dropped into the 40s. ‘is normal.
“The pace immediately this morning was fast and I felt comfortable on the bike. [tyre] I spent the middle of the day was not ideal, but the other two were fantastic. Able to stay in the 40s despite going in, going out and so on.
“We played with the setup. I think we are quite comfortable. It’s hard to say, there’s always a lot more rubber [at a test].
” We’ve tested [the new] fairing, which has its positives and negatives…. [the current fairing] turns better, it catches less wind. While the [new] the larger fairing is like between last year’s fairing and this year’s fairing. You don’t catch as much wind on your body, but you might be sacrificing a bit in the corner.
“That’s why I want to say there are positives and negatives. It may work for some places and maybe some not.
Miller, closely linked with a move to KTM next season, is ninth in the world championship.