MotoGP: The Long Battle Ahead of Maverick Vinales

MotoGP Movistar Yamaha newcomer Maverick Vinales saw the championship title right before his eyes – only to have it snatched away. Now he fights to reclaim what he has lost.

Maverick Vinales showed the fans of MotoGP what it means to absolutely dominate. From the moment he stepped foot onto the track for pre-season testing, the young Spaniard seemed more like a hybrid beast out on the track, fusing mechanical complexity with sheer human skill in a deft display of newfound dominance on the factory Yamaha bike. His back-to-back victories at the outset made it seem that this new rising force was here to stay.

Unfortunately, reality took a different turn. As suddenly as Vinales was proving to the world what he was capable of, his championship fortunes began to free-fall as his 26-point lead was snatched away from him in only four Grand Prixs. And who better to take to the throne than current MotoGP World Championship defender Marc Marquez? The Honda rider has performed quite the turn-around after the first half of the season saw him struggle to find the performance he needed on his 2017 challenger. Though Vinales follows Marquez by only a five-point deficit, the sudden drop-off in performance has undoubtedly knocked his confidence:

“I’m disappointed, for sure. We lost so many points in four races, we needed to be in front when conditions were normal.

The first part of the season confirmed we are strong, the second part confirms we have to learn. I want to try to learn and I’ll give my maximum for the second part of the championship.” – Maverick Vinales

Despite the setback, Vinales has shown that he is doing his best to take it all in stride and focus on the work that needs to happen to right his wronged ship.

“We must do it the best way, work hard during the break, try to improve the bike during this month and in Brno do your 100 percent.

We have to make the bike work like it was working before, and that’s it. Then we can win races and be in the front of the championship.” – Maverick Vinales

Vinales’ key quality has always been adaptability – and he’s shown that he’s polished that skill to a shine. Although it is certainly a lamentable period of results for the young Spaniard, reality seems to be set more in focus when we realize that Vinales is still leading ahead of his teammate, Valentino Rossi – 9-time World Champion and series veteran.

Whatever happens over the summer break will dictate the remaining half of the season for the sport – whether Vinales and his crew can build themselves back up to where they were remains to be seen, but the young rider’s determination thus far has proven them all but capable.

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