Cal Crutchlow declared himself happy with the performance of his Tech 3 Yamaha YZR-M1 in Friday Practice although he is desperate for some dry running tomorrow to finalise his preparations for the race.
The Briton was impressive in today's fully wet practice sessions, finishing tenth in the morning before improving to fifth in the afternoon and although he feels he would be competitive in the wet, Crutchlow doesn't share the same confidence if he goes into a dry race without any practice on slick tyres.
“Today was a positive start to the weekend and I think I could have gone a fair bit quicker at the end of this afternoon’s session and been challenging for the top three but I made a couple of small mistakes on my last lap. But I was still fifth fastest though and I felt pretty comfortable in the full wet conditions. I am happy enough even though the track hasn’t got much grip at all. It was very slippery and you’ve got to be careful because it is easy to make a mistake. But the bike definitely felt better in the full wet rather than when it was a bit sketchy this morning. I just hope we get a dry session tomorrow to get some time on the bike in the dry. Nobody wants to be starting the race with no dry track time, so we’ll have to see what happens with the weather. If it is wet tomorrow I’m sure we can make some improvements and go a bit faster.”
On the opposite side of the garage, Josh Hayes made an impressive start to his debut MotoGP weekend, clocking the tenth fastest time in the soaking wet FP2 session. The 36 year old American was quicker than both of the factory Yamahas and relished the experience.
“My first day in MotoGP has been very difficult and quite scary at times to be honest. Before I went out this morning I don’t think I have ever been so nervous in my life. I was happy with my lap times this morning in tricky conditions but then in the full wet this afternoon it meant it was quite a scary introduction to MotoGP. Although I’ve not experienced the full potential of a MotoGP bike because of the wet conditions, it is obvious that the Tech 3 Yamaha is a very good motorcycle and the Team has done an excellent job to try and make me comfortable. All I had to do was ride the machine and try to improve. Right now it is not so much about the set-up of the bike, it is just me learning the bike and I will continue that process tomorrow. I just hope that at some point I will get to have a dry practice so I can get to grips with the carbon brakes. I don’t want to be going into the race on Sunday having to learn to ride in the dry and also adjust to the carbon brakes after two wet days. That would be the worst scenario for me but I enjoyed today a lot. It was a great experience and once again I want to thank everybody at Yamaha, Tech 3 and Monster that made this possible.”