The dominant Fiat Yamaha Team endured a tough end to qualifying at Brno on Saturday when both
2010 MotoGP title leader Jorge Lorenzo and reigning world champion Valentino Rossi crashed at Brno.
The good news is that neither rider was hurt, but the falls meant they were unable to challenge for pole position and will start from third (Lorenzo) and fifth (Rossi) on the Czech Republic Grand Prix grid.
Lorenzo's bike ended up on to of a tyre wall with the engine running, before he switched it off, and - having crashed out of last year's race while battling Rossi - the Spaniard's confidence is sure to have taken a dent.
"This wasn't the best practice session of the year for us," he admitted. "We made some modifications that didn't work and it was especially a problem in the front, which was closing on me a lot. I wasn't fast and I was having to take too many risks. Then I made a mistake and the bike went flying!
"I really hope the engine is okay for tomorrow, luckily I am not hurt and I was able to get up straight away. We are still on the front row and we can't always be on top! I think tomorrow will be a tough race but we will see how we can improve our setting and see what happens."
"The crash was unlucky; he lost the front although it wasn't totally clear what happened," added team manager Wilco Zeelenberg. "Anyway he is okay so we're not worried and now we will try to improve his confidence in the front tomorrow."
Rossi was the most visibly frustrated of the pair after his slower speed spill at the final chicane, which he thinks cost him a shot at pole. Nevertheless, the Italian was naturally have been relieved to walk away from his first accident since breaking his leg in June.
"I'm okay and I haven't made any of my injuries worse, so this is the most important thing," he said. "I was pushing hard and trying to make my best flying lap and I just lost the front, so maybe we're still missing a bit of grip. I was really angry when I crashed because I think it was possible to get second or even the pole position!
"Apart from the mistake though I'm very happy because I feel confident on the bike and I enjoyed riding today; I think for tomorrow I can be competitive. Warm-up is going to be important because we need to try to slightly improve my feeling with the front. We also need to wait to see what the weather does!"