The goal was to take a spot on the front row, but instead Danilo Petrucci had to settle for the third row, since he will start from the seventh spot on the grid tomorrow. It is a bitter-sweet qualifying position for the Pramac rider who is a bit disappointed.
“I’m not entirely satisfied, partly because I made a mistake on my best lap – Danilo began – In fact, I had hoped for the second row, but in that section I was lucky not to make contact with Jorge who was just a few metres from me. As for the tyres, on the other hand, we managed to take a step forward – he added – With temperatures so high, yesterday we struggled a lot. The problem is still the overheating of the rear.”
In any case, Danilo has clear ideas about what to do.
“I’ll need to try and start well in order to save the tyres throughout the race – he warned – In these two days, we have worked a lot on the settings and we have a good base. The only problem is that we can’t be effective on the flying lap for several laps since the gap is too wide.”
Compared to last year, this time Petrucci is demonstrating a different pace.
“Along with Phillip Island, in 2017 Aragón was one of the most difficult tracks for me – he recalled – I was able to study it and this year I am able to be less aggressive in my ride, although I am lacking something at the rear.”
So, the main topic is the tyres.
“This year the temperature is crucial – he pointed out – The tyres don’t wear out, but they overheat, so I’m worried for tomorrow. From what I have seen so far, over race distance I am unable to maintain the pace of Jorge, Dovi and Marc.”
If the favourites for the podium are Dovizioso, Marquez and Lorenzo, all the Pramac rider can do is aim for the battle for fourth.
“We’ll have a go with Crutchlow, Pedrosa, Iannone, I’d say those riders. We are almost in seven (smiling). This morning, the top ten were within a half a second of one another and it wasn’t easy to make the difference.”
The final comment was on the fender Yamaha was flaunting.
“They tried that at Ducati too – he concluded – but it had little to no effect. I asked the team to do something, but there are not many solutions, partly because you need to have air for cooling. You need channels that lead to the fairing, without creating resistance. As I said, I’m worried because the tyre temperature increases with weight.