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Rossi: Size difference to Vinales is a disadvantage

Valentino Rossi says the fact he is taller and heavier than his Yamaha MotoGP teammate Maverick Vinales makes it more difficult for him to manage his rear tyre.

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Rossi: Size difference to Vinales is a disadvantage

Rossi is 10cm (4'') taller than Vinales, who is 171cm (5'6''), which also results in the Italian being heavier.

However, it is the height difference that makes tyre management a tougher job for Rossi, saying he has less freedom to move around the bike and ease the pressure on the tyres.

"For me, some [of the] difference is the weight but is not a lot, but anyway I am a little bit more heavy," said Rossi as he compared himself to Vinales, who ended Yamaha's victory drought last time out in Australia.

"Especially my size, when you are long and tall, it's more difficult for the rear tyre life. You can have some other advantage but looks like you stress more the rear tyre.

"You have to work in another way in the position of the bike and everything, because now looks with this tyre if we load too much you suffer a lot.

"It's also true that Maverick has another a different position on the bike, he is more on the front especially with the top of the body. This is a difference, but I am taller so I have to modify a little bit."

Rossi and Vinales ended the opening day of the Malaysian Grand Prix in fourth and sixth on the timesheets respectively, both less than two tenths off the pace set by Suzuki rider Alex RIns.

Rossi said his team worked on modifying his bike from Phillip Island to improve rear grip and, although he compromised his top speed, he was regardless happy with the changes.

"I was quite fast this morning and also this afternoon," he said. "After checking the data in Phillip Island we work a lot on the setting of the bike, we try to improve the grip especially in the rear tyre.

"We modify the setting, the balance of the bike and we try to have less speed and better acceleration.

"The first impression is positive because I was good in the hot lap but also the pace is not so bad. It's just Friday, we have to see, but the start was not so bad."

Additional reporting by Oriol Puigdemont

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