Viñales gets title fight back on track
Maverick Viñales got his bid for the 2017 Motogp world championship back on track at Mugello after taking second place at the Italian Grand Prix. The result saw him extend his lead over Valentino Rossi, Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa to an impressive 26 points.
Viñales looked cool and calculated in Sunday’s race as he picked his way through the field. He even led for a while as the fight at the front heated up. And when Dovizioso was able to pile the pressure on thanks to the incredible top speed of his Ducati, Viñales still managed to score big points.
“I’m so pleased to be second, because it was a difficult weekend; I crashed on Friday afternoon and was quite lucky to walk away. I tried for the win early in the race, but Dovi was really strong and there was nothing I could do.
“Normally I’m a rider who thinks a lot about the last six or so laps of the race and can push hard again, but not on Sunday. I was thinking about the championship, and it was better to settle for 20 points than to maybe take none home trying for 25.”
And yet, despite his rivals well behind him and his lead extending to over a race win in hand, he says that he’s trying his best not to get too carried away.
“It’s always difficult to believe you can win the championship even when you’re constantly on the podium and winning races, but we have one objective for the year and I have to trust in myself, in the team, and in the bike. I’m always pushing for 100%.
“We suffered with the crash on Friday, because we always want to be at 100% and at the top of the time screens. I have to learn that I don’t always have to give that level though. I don’t crash much, but I still have to be more intelligent there and not make mistakes.”
He now heads to his home race boosted by momentum and confidence that he can keep an impressive run of four podiums from six races going at the Montmelò circuit this weekend.