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Crutchlow: I’m pretty happy with that

Cal Crutchlow eleventh on MotoGP race debut, team-mate Colin Edwards top 'non-factory' rider in eighth.
Cal Crutchlow concluded his first ever MotoGP race positively by making a last-lap pass on Hector Barbera for eleventh at Qatar on Sunday night.

It wasn't quite the top ten finish that the Englishman had been hoping for, especially after turning heads with eighth place - in front of MotoGP megastar Valentino Rossi and his own Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team-mate Colin Edwards - during qualifying.

But with the seven factory riders that started the race (eight if you count Gresini's Marco Simoncelli) all finishing, and given his nasty finger injury from last Monday's test, Crutchlow couldn't be too hard on himself.

“I'm pretty happy with that [although] honestly I'd have liked to have got a top ten after how well qualifying went,” said Cal. “I couldn't keep up with the group that included Nicky [Hayden] and Aoyama because it was tough to pass Barbera.

“They passed Barbera and I then overtook him to chase them, but he got me back immediately and let them get away because his pace dropped off quite a bit. But he's got a fast bike and that makes it hard to make a pass and stay in front of him.

“I was happy to be in the fight for the top ten for as long as I was and the experience gained is invaluable to help me progress in MotoGP. I wanted to finish and get a race under my belt, so it was mission accomplished.

“The next couple of races will be tough because I don't know the circuits but I'll be doing my best for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 squad."

Team manager Herve Poncharal praised Crutchlow's performance.

“I am very pleased with Cal. We didn't know what to expect because of his inexperience and the finger he damaged in the test was a bad injury. But he was able to battle with Aoyama and Hayden, who are world champions,” said the Frenchman.

“It was a good pass on Barbera too, who has a lot more experience than him and that result that will give him more confidence for the next race. In Jerez his finger will be a lot better and I'm sure he can learn the track quickly, so we are looking for another positive result."

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Crutchlow, Qatar MotoGP 2011
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aaa - Unregistered

March 21, 2011 11:56 AM

Good showing by Cal considering his injuries, weird no one praises him for giving it his all with the Shoulder injury and finger injury, a footballer would be out for the season with that alone.... He does not even say if its costing him time, just gets on with it.. Good ride from Colin as well, think its a tough year ahead for the Tech 3 boys, too many fast factory bikes out there... Even tho last years M1's are good all the new factory bikes this year have improved again.


March 21, 2011 10:07 AM
Last Edited 797 days ago

Solid if unspectacular opening from CC. He kept it upright, brought it safely home without any mistakes and gained a ton of experience in the process. I think qualifying perhaps set up a few false expectations but he's got to learn not only to ride quickly at this level but how to race the other guys. But he did ok and will build from here. And credit to him for not mentioning the injuries again. Good aggressive ride from Colin. I thought he might even hang with Spies for a while.

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