Yamaha Racing's Valentino Rossi topped the Brno test on Monday afternoon this week and the Italian rider is feeling confident that he can continue to show great speed in Austria this coming weekend, even though the nature of the Czech circuit and the Red Bull Ring are quite diverse.
The Doctor has ridden at the Spielberg track three times before. He secured his first ever podium at the Austrian venue with a third place in the 125cc class in 1996, and followed it up with a second place in the same class in 1997.
Last year he just missed out on the podium, taking fourth place.
The Italian is determined to climb the rostrum this time round and decrease the current 22-point gap to first place in the championship rankings.
“Going back to the track immediately is very important to us, especially after a test like Monday's in Brno, where we tried so many things,” he said. “During the weekend in the Czech Republic we were fast in every condition and the test helped us to understand a bit more.”
“Now we go to the circuit of Austria, that‘s not very favourable to us, but I hope we can fight for a good result. I'm fine with the YZR-M1 now, I can ride the bike better, I‘m happy and I hope I can fight for the podium at every race. The championship is still open and it will be important to take as many points as possible.”
Last year the Spielberg circuit hosted its first MotoGP Grand Prix in nineteen years. The circuit was originally built in 1969 and was rebuilt in 1996 to the track-layout it still has today.
The circuit stands out as it has only three left and seven right corners, a 626m longest straight, and features a 18-metre-high landmark "Bull of Spielberg" in the track's centre.
The circuit's design puts the emphasis on top speed, acceleration and braking stability, allowing the riders plenty of opportunities to fully open the throttle and put on a show for the Austrian fans.