Quartararo “scared” of Yamaha’s overtaking potential in Qatar

Fabio Quartararo admits he is “a bit scared” about the overtaking potential of the 2021 Yamaha at Losail following the opening day of the second Qatar MotoGP test.

Quartararo “scared” of Yamaha’s overtaking potential in Qatar
Listen to this article

Quartararo dipped underneath the old outright lap record at the Qatar Grand Prix venue on Wednesday, ending the day 0.08 seconds behind Ducati’s Jack Miller in second.

Despite also showing strong long run pace on his Yamaha, Quartararo was some 12km/h down through the speed trap relative to Ducati and admits he doesn’t “feel great overtaking people”.

Read Also:

And with engine development outlawed for all but Aprilia this season, Yamaha hasn’t been able to come into 2021 with a more powerful motor.

“Actually, here is one of the tracks where I’m a little bit scared because we still need to fix some issues with the bike that I don’t feel great overtaking people,” he said when asked if any improvements had been made in the M1’s ability to ride in a pack. “We need to make that step because on the straight unfortunately if there is a Ducati here they will overtake us.

“We need to find a solution to overtake them back and try to make a gap. So, looking at the lap times, [Johann] Zarco and Miller are in front, it’s not easy but we can’t put 20 or more horsepower in the engine.

“So, I’ll just do my best and we’re already working so hard. At the moment no [braking isn’t perfect], so there is two more days to improve that because it is the area where we need to improve to make a step to the other riders.”

 

Team-mate Maverick Vinales believed Yamaha’s objective this season has to be ensuring its qualifying performances are strong and it’s able to hit the front at the start to be able to ride its own lines. Typically a weak area for Vinales, he spent the first two hours of Wednesday’s session making practice starts and felt some tweaks – especially to the clutch – had to be made.

Both riders evaluated Yamaha’s 2021 chassis, with Vinales doing so for the first time – though feels he has to do more laps to gain a better understanding. Quartararo wasn’t hugely impressed by it last weekend, feeling it didn’t quite return him the same feeling he had with his preferred 2019 frame.

But his feedback was more positive on Wednesday when asked if he felt better on it.

“I think we are in the good direction, but I think we are still missing a little bit,” he said. “I’m feeling good because you don’t do 1m53.2s if you’re not feeling good with your bike.

“Pace was great also, but I hope to make a step during these last two days. I feel great on the bike, every time better.

“So, I really hope to make that one or two tenths on the pace, it will be amazing.”

shares
comments

Related video

Miller thinks Honda’s Pol Espargaro is “standout” rider in tests
Previous article

Miller thinks Honda’s Pol Espargaro is “standout” rider in tests

Next article

Rossi "felt like a real rider" again in Qatar MotoGP test

Rossi "felt like a real rider" again in Qatar MotoGP test
Load comments
Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma Prime

Why Ducati holds all the power in its MotoGP rider dilemma

OPINION: The French Grand Prix looks to have made Ducati’s decision on its factory team line-up simpler, as Enea Bastianini stormed to his third win of the campaign and Jorge Martin crashed out for a fifth time in 2022. But, as Ducati suggests to Motorsport.com, it remains in the strongest position in a wild rider market

MotoGP
May 16, 2022
The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP Prime

The seismic aftershock of Suzuki's decision to leave MotoGP

Suzuki's sudden decision to leave the MotoGP World Championship at the end of the season has acted as a stirring element in a market that had already erupted. We analyse what this means for the grid going into 2023

MotoGP
May 11, 2022
How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP Prime

How the real Ducati began to emerge in MotoGP's Spanish GP

Ducati’s 2022 MotoGP bike has had a tough start to life and the expected early-season title charge from Francesco Bagnaia did not materialise. But the Spanish Grand Prix signalled a turning point for both the GP22 and Bagnaia, as the 2021 runner-up belatedly got his season underway after a straight fight with Fabio Quartararo

MotoGP
May 2, 2022
How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt Prime

How praise for Honda's MotoGP bike has given way to doubt

In a little over two months, Honda has gone from setting the pace in MotoGP testing with its new RC213V prototype to being at a crossroads - caused by the discrepancy in its riders' feedback. After a Portuguese GP that underwhelmed, serious questions are now being asked of Honda in 2022

MotoGP
Apr 26, 2022
Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes Prime

Why Quartararo's win was vital not only for his title hopes

Fabio Quartararo got his MotoGP title defence off the ground in the Portuguese Grand Prix as a dominant first win of 2022 rocketed him to the top of the standings. While a significant result in terms of his title hopes, it has come at an even more important time in terms of his 2023 contract negotiations

MotoGP
Apr 25, 2022
The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year Prime

The MotoGP rookie fighting two fronts in his debut year

Darryn Binder has found himself in the unenviable position as MotoGP's most under-pressure rookie in 2022 having made the step directly from Moto3 with a reputation as an over-aggressive rider. This hasn't been an easy thing to shake at the start of the season, but he believes tangible progress is being made

MotoGP
Apr 18, 2022
How ‘Beast’ mode is putting Ducati in 2022 MotoGP title contention Prime

How ‘Beast’ mode is putting Ducati in 2022 MotoGP title contention

Enea Bastianini’s second win of the 2022 campaign at COTA puts him back in the lead of the standings and once again showed the best Ducati package is still the 2021 bike. Those closest to Bastianini tell Motorsport.com why he’s so good on the GP21 relative to his factory counterparts.

MotoGP
Apr 12, 2022
How Espargaro helped Aprilia shed MotoGP's underdog tag Prime

How Espargaro helped Aprilia shed MotoGP's underdog tag

Aleix Espargaro became MotoGP's newest winner in a thrilling Argentina Grand Prix in which he also proved the merits of the Aprilia project. After six years of hard graft, both parties have reaped the rewards they have long thought they deserved. But it was several key moments in that journey that led both to that momentous Sunday at Termas de Rio Hondo.

MotoGP
Apr 4, 2022