Cal Crutchlow is targeting a top ten finish in tomorrow's Grand Prix of Aragon after an excellent performance in qualifying. The Briton secured 12th on the grid despite riding with the slowest bike in terms of straight-line speed, three places ahead to teammate Colin Edwards.
Given their lack of grunt, Crutchlow feels the Tech 3 team did a superb job to get him on the fourth row, especially considering how close the times were.
“I don’t think 12th place on the grid really reflects just how well myself and the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team have been performing this weekend. I’ve come to a new track and pretty much lost a session with all of yesterday’s power problems and yet another couple of tenths would have put me in the top six on the grid. I am really happy with the way I’m riding and happy with my crew, who have done a great job again this weekend. The times are so close that 12th could quite easily have been sixth or seventh, but I’m still confident that I can race inside the top 10 tomorrow.”
The lack of straight-line speed may cause Crutchlow problems in the race though, with the rookie admitting he may struggle to overtake on the 968m back-straight.
“It is going to be difficult because we’ve got a bit of a speed issue on the straight. I’m really strong in three sections of the track but in the last sector I’m a long way down the split times and that makes it quite difficult. It is not going to be easy to pass people but I’ll get my head down and push as hard as I can to do the best job possible. The goal as always will be the top 10 and I’m looking forward to a good battle and picking up more valuable points.”
Teammate Edwards was disappointed to find himself on the fifth row after struggling with rear traction throughout the afternoon.
“That was a hard session to say the least and starting my 150th MotoGP race from 15th on the grid certainly wasn’t in the plan. We’ve gone from qualifying seventh in Misano to 15th, so it is clear we’ve had a few issues this weekend. One is the bike isn’t the fastest out there and I’ve not got a lot of rear grip. The moment I touch the throttle the rear tyre spins, and that combined with the engine means we simply aren’t fast enough. I guess we’ve got to back to the drawing board tonight and see if we can come up with something, but it is going to be a tough race. Like I always do, I’ll be going out and giving it my maximum effort for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team and see how far we can climb up the order and score a few points.”