With the winter nearly over, Team SUZUKI ECSTAR is heading to Malaysia for the first test of 2019, with the debut of the final version of the livery that will characterise the two GSX-RR’s ridden by Alex Rins and Joan Mir.
The winter break has been very useful for preparing an advanced version of the technical package that will be available to the Factory Riders from the beginning of the season. With the main goal of finding increased power without losing traction, as well as improving the behaviour of the bike in corner entry and exit.
As already announced, the lineup will be composed of two young Spaniards, a choice designed to continue Suzuki’s philosophy of bringing on and growing young talent. With two seasons aboard the GSX-RR already, Alex Rins will be the “experienced” rider in the garage, having achieved 5 podiums during the 2018 season. He will have the clear target of getting to the top step of the podium as soon as possible.
Debutant Joan Mir has already proven that he is not daunted by the top class, showing solid performances in the November tests in Valencia and Jerez. He can rely on a solid team around him, who have plenty of experience in managing young riders. And with no pressure on his shoulders, this year will be a learning phase in his partnership with Team SUZUKI ECSTAR.
Shinichi Sahara – Project Leader
“We are approaching the true beginning of this new season with renewed enthusiasm and positivity. The tests at the end of last year gave us important direction, and my expectation is to find ourselves at a competitive level. We have been working on many aspects of the GSX-RR and with the contribution of all our riders – Rins, Mir and the test rider Guintoli – we have been able to improve our technical package. For us, 2019 will be an important season: from one side we will have Alex Rins, who is still young in terms of age but is already experienced with our team and our machine, he has the tools to take the victory we long for. On the other hand we’ll start a new training programme with a young talent in the form of Joan Mir, with no pressure on him and all our efforts going towards his development. Last year we have also reinforced our test team and Guintoli is a true part of the squad who can give us important feedback, without forgetting the hard work done behind the scenes by Japanese test riders in Hamamatsu. I’d say we have a good and solid set up as a team, and we hope for a positive 2019 season.”
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