Ever since arriving in MotoGP in 2006, Dani Pedrosa has won two races a year for the factory Repsol Honda team.
But heading into the 2009 season finale, in front of his home fans at Valencia, the Spaniard has only win under his belt this year - and admits he'd value a race victory on Sunday above re-taking third in the championship from Casey Stoner.
Stoner starts the final round eleven points ahead of Pedrosa, and the Ducati rider was fastest of all in Friday practice at Valencia - when Pedrosa set the third fastest lap time, 0.428sec behind the Australian.
“For a first practice session, this was OK today and we completed some valuable laps to famliarise ourselves with this circuit again,” said Pedrosa, the only rider to have won in all three classes at the Ricardo Tormo circuit.
“It was really windy out there and this affected the machine more in some corners than others - like in the third sector where it was quite difficult to control the bike. Still, we have time to solve this tomorrow.
“There's a gap to the riders in front and we need to make some improvements for tomorrow so that we've got the best chance of qualifying well.
“I really want to win this race - it's more important to me than finishing third in the championship - so we need to work really hard to give us a good chance on Sunday,” he confirmed.
Of the 16 races so far this season, six have been won by newly crowned world champion Valentino Rossi (Yamaha), with four each for Stoner and Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) and one apiece for Pedrosa and team-mate Andrea Dovizioso.
Dovizioso, who is aiming to defend fifth in the championship from Colin Edwards this weekend, was eighth fastest on Friday - one place behind the Tech 3 Yamaha rider.
“I'm confident we can improve and move forward because eighth is not where I want to be,” said the Italian. “The track conditions today were not too bad, but the strong wind made controlling the bike more difficult, and this took some getting used to. Here the bike usually tends to wheelie because there are a lot of slow corners, and the strong wind accentuated this issue.”