Valentino Rossi was left frustrated by a mistake in the Yamaha pit box which caused him to qualify down in twelfth at Silverstone. The Italian missed the opportunity to complete a timed lap in the closing stages of Q2 due to the error which made him miss the chequered flag and the best of the weather conditions.
Not only was Rossi disappointed by the pit-lane mix-up, he also felt it cost him a likely position on the second row of the grid and felt his pace was strong enough to qualify inside the top six.
“I was very upset because we had a good strategy. We were a little bit tight but we made a mistake in the box and lost too much time changing the rear tyre. I missed the flag by two seconds. It’s a shame because I did a 2:10.7 on the last lap which would be P5 and starting from the second row. We made a mistake in the box but we were also a little bit unlucky. I have to start from the fourth row and that will be more difficult.”
The day was overshadowed by a terrible accident involving Tito Rabat who sustained multiple fractures to his leg when he was struck by Franco Morbidelli’s Honda as several riders aquaplaned off at Stowe in FP4. To avoid the worst of the weather, tomorrow’s race has swapped with Moto3 in the schedule, moving forwards to 11:30am.
Speaking after qualifying, Rossi gave his impressions on the newly resurfaced circuit and the way it copes with the water, a factor which could dictate whether tomorrow’s race goes ahead at all.
“I understand we had a lot of water and problems with aquaplaning. The problem with the asphalt is when it’s wet, the grip is not so bad. The problem is it’s not able to drain the water, so the water stays on top and we have aquaplaning so if it rains very hard and we have a lot of water, it’s dangerous. I don’t think they can do anything for tomorrow.”
Rossi famously took victory in wet conditions here three years ago and despite such limited running in the rain today, the Yamaha rider is optimistic that he can be competitive tomorrow.
“Fortunately, we did some laps (in the wet) and I feel not so bad with the bike. The feeling was quite good but it was strange conditions because it was half and half so for sure we need to work more but the first impressions were quite good.”