MotoAmerica Medallia Superbike rider Danilo Petrucci has joined Team Suzuki ECSTAR in Buriram, Thailand, this weekend for round 17 of the MotoGP season. The Italian is filling in for injured team member Joan Mir on the Suzuki GSX-RR.
After a day of acclimating to both the bike and the Chang International Circuit, Petrucci started FP4 on Saturday with a run of 11 laps, making the most of the good conditions to gather valuable race setup info. In Q1, he lowered his lap time significantly and set his best time of the weekend with a 1:31.604. Petrucci will start Sunday’s MotoGP race from 24th on the grid.
“I’m happy, even though I didn’t want to finish last,” Petrucci said. “I’m feeling quite confident about the race because my overall pace is much better than my ‘flying laps,’ so I think I can be quicker tomorrow. When it comes to setting a hot lap, I’m finding it harder to understand how best to ride the bike, and the others are faster than me because they do it every week. The team has put in a big effort for me. They are amazing, and so is the bike, and I will try to be as competitive as possible tomorrow because they deserve it.”
After a Sunday morning warmup session for Petrucci and his MotoGP competitors, the race will start at 2 p.m. local time in Buriram, Thailand.