A relieved Maverick Vinales says he “didn’t have time to think” after realising his M1 Yamaha’s brakes had failed in the Styrian Grand Prix, forcing him to bail at 120mph.
Vinales revealed following the race that his machine’s brakes had gotten progressively worse throughout the 28 lap Red Bull Ring encounter, saying that he had “arrived at Turns 3 and 4 without brakes” for several laps leading up to the crash.
His brakes finally gave out heading into Turn 1 just past mid-distance, forcing him to bail from his M1 onto the track at around 120mph-the bike continuing on and ultimately slamming into the air fences that line the circuit perimeter, destroying them and catching itself on fire-causing the race to be red flagged as a result.
Vinales thankfully escaped his second major incident at the Red Bull Ring in seven days without injury, but was frustrated to have thrown away “three very good opportunities” across the first MotoGP triple header of its shortened 2020 campaign.
“Well actually it was a quick reaction because I didn’t have enough time to think, I was thinking about something happening for many laps as every time I arrived at Turn 3 and 4 I was without brakes, so I could not do much more,” explained Vinales.
“We win and lose as a team, it is what it is sometimes we make mistakes, but for sure we’ve had three very good opportunities to be leading the championship and we’ve made three mistakes in a row.”
Vinales was at least buoyed over the speed shown by his M1 across the Brno and Red Bull Ring events, although reckons that he needs to qualify at the front at Misano in order to try and secure his first victory of the year due to his Yamaha being “slow on the straights”.
“Now we need to think about it and try to find the positives out of the events, the most important thing is that I was fighting towards the front, I cannot ask for more right now.
“We can see we are slow on the straights so we need to wait for the tracks where our bike is good, Misano is a good track for myself so I want to stay positive and not lose my mind because I know that with the correct things I can be on pole, and if we are up there from the beginning it can be a completely different race for Yamaha.”
The seven-time premier class winner has slipped to fifth in the riders standings following the triple header after scoring just eight points across the trio of events, his best result of tenth coming at the Austrian GP last weekend.
Due to Petronas SRT Yamaha man and championship leader Fabio Quartararo also struggling for speed across the Czech and Austrian contests Vinales remains only 22 points from the points lead, although KTM’s Brad Binder and Ducati men Andrea Dovizioso and Jack Miller made inroads following Yamaha’s dominant Jerez showing.