Maverick Vinales had to bail off his works YZR-M1 at more than 140mph in yesterday’s second Austria MotoGP after the carbon brakes exploded on the way into turn one.
Vinales, like at least two other Yamaha riders, had experienced brake problems in the first part of yesterday’s encounter but none so spectacularly or dangerously as the Spaniard whose bike came to a dead stop in the airforce, which popped before the bike burst into flames.
“I lose completely the brakes, at the end there was no brakes at all so I jumped from the bike, I didn’t have no chance to stop it,” said Vinales, speaking at the track.
“I was quite fast, I was feeling fantastic on the first laps, I was pushing Dovi, but as we don’t have top speed, you can see I could not overtake
“I overtook one time and I said ‘okay, now I can go forward in front’, but then he overtake me on the straight very easily.
“I was just waiting to get the rhythm, but then I started to lose the front pressure of the brake, I went out one time.
“I make three laps very slow in 1’26s, then I push again at 1’24s, then again without brakes, and then Quartararo, Valentino and Petrucci overtake me.
“Then suddenly the brake was good. So, I could make 1’22s, 1’24s on mediums and I was recovering a lot to Valentino and Fabio, but then suddenly at corner one the brake exploded, so impossible to do anything.’
Vinales walked away from crash unscathed after sliding up the tarmac and back on to his feet but did not takes the re-start.
“It’s something I never had during all my MotoGP career. Maybe pressure would go down a little bit.
“I played with the lever, but on every lap I was adjusting the lever corner by corner so I couldn’t do nothing.”
It is important not to lose focus, the championship is very long and Misano is next which is a track I really like and I will go for the victory there.”
Team boss Massimo Meregalli explained that Vinales chose to use the stock Brembo setup and not an evolution the company had brought.
"What happened to Maverick was not something we could expect We chose to use the, let's call it, standard brake system. Because Brembo brought an evolution and Valentino, Fabio and Franco used this system.
"Maverick didn’t, because Maverick never suffered the very high temperatures that the others suffered last weekend and also when he tried the new system, he didn't have the feeling he was looking for.
"So for these two reasons we decided to use the conventional system. Probably because he was behind other riders, he couldn’t cool down the system and after the fifth lap he felt something but tried to manage.
"Unfortunately what happened, happened, but luckily he is fine and that is the most important thing.
"Now we will try to understand exactly what happened but it won't be easy because the bike is not in good condition. But I expect by Misano we will receive more information from our Japanese engineers."