A somewhat incomplete Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team returns to Italy for the Gran Premio Tribul Mastercard di San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini this week, with Maverick Viñales as the team’s sole representative following Valentino Rossi‘s injury.
A fortnight ago, Viñales ended the weekend at the Silverstone Circuit on a high, securing a hard-fought second place. Thanks to this podium result, he is now in third place in the championship standings, 13 points from first and with a 4-point margin to second place.
This weekend the Spaniard aims to inch closer to the top spot in the rankings again, by securing a place on the San Marino rostrum. He visited it once before, when he scored a second place in the Moto3 class in 2013. Though the improved feeling on his YZR-M1 at the British Grand Prix – and the positive private Misano test results of the week before – left the young Spaniard in high spirits, he is saddened that he will be riding without his teammate at the upcoming MotoGP round.
The Italian supporters are also disappointed that Rossi will not be racing at his home Grand Prix, especially as the track is just 20 minutes down the road from his home in Tavullia. Though the fans will deeply miss the nine-time World Champion’s presence, they will be cheered up by the news that – after breaking his leg in an enduro training accident on Thursday, 31st August – his recovery is going well.
The Italian has confirmed that he will be back on his bike as soon as he returns to full fitness. For the San Marino Grand Prix, the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team will set up his garage as usual, so his two YZR-M1s will be there for the fans to see.
This weekend the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP bikes will again sport a “#rodamosjuntos” logo, as part of a safe driving awareness initiative started by Movistar. The safety campaign was launched during La Vuelta (and run until September 9th) to promote mutual respect between drivers and cyclists on the road.
Besides supporting this safety initiative, the Factory Yamaha team is also supporting KiSS Misano (KiSS stands for Keep it Shiny & Sunstainable). On Thursday, September 7th, Yamaha Motor Racing Srl General Manager Marco Riva will attend a pre-event press conference, where he will reveal the special Yamaha Tricity that Yamaha Motor Italy is donating to the Misano Circuit to support the environmental and social sustainability programme. The special livery Tricity is to be used for health emergencies. The vehicle is styled to match KiSS Misano‘s “green image”, so it will stand out in a crowd, and it comes equipped with a Cardiac Science AED device (a resuscitator).
The Misano track was constructed in 1972 and was a regular scene for Italian Grands Prix throughout the 80s and early 90s. The 4.2 km track is ridden clockwise since a radical renovation was done to meet MotoGP’s safety regulations in 2007, putting the circuit back on the calendar. The upgrade also included a new chicane, giving the 4.2 km track its current lay-out of six left and ten right corners. These improvements not only made the track safer, but also increased the race excitement, as the numerous fast corners provide many overtaking possibilities for the passionate Italian fans to enjoy.
To watch Viñales and Rossi enjoy some track action at the Misano circuit during a private test, held a week before the previous race in Silverstone, click on the below ‘2017 Misano Private Test’ video link.