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Rossi to start twelfth on the grid

"We expected to go better at Mugello, and instead we struggled here as well" – Valentino Rossi.
Valentino Rossi will start his home Italian Grand Prix from his worst-ever qualifying position at Mugello.

The seven-time MotoGP champion, who entered his first Italian GP as a 125cc rider in 1996 and has won on nine occasions since, qualified in twelfth position - 1.868sec from Honda's Casey Stoner - after another rain-interrupted session.

“We had many things to try and the rain this afternoon ruined our plans, but that's no excuse for the gap, as the conditions were the same for everyone," said Rossi. "It's true that we lost yesterday's morning session, and that we're still working on development.

"We expected to go better at Mugello, and instead we struggled here as well. I don't feel good with the front, so I lose a lot on corner entry, and I can't ride the bike well. As for the rear, we've made progress, and the GP11.1 has solved some issues.

"Acceleration is better, but we still have to work with the front. Obviously, we'll try our best in the race, although it will be hard, but in any case we'll gather experience that will be useful in the future."

Team-mate Nicky Hayden will start as the top Ducati rider in ninth, 1.475sedc from Stoner.

“This morning we made a couple little improvements with the bike and were feeling quite good," said the American. "We didn't put in a new soft tyre at the end, so the gap looked worse than it was. I felt confident, but this afternoon the conditions were crazy. It was spotting rain in the beginning, but everybody put their heads down and went out full-gas.

"Then the conditions got worse and it was a shame for the fans that we were all sitting in the garage when we'd normally be doing a time attack. It rained yesterday and today around race time, so I went out for a little at the end and had a look at the new surface in the wet, just in case.

"The tyre choice is going to be interesting because we really haven't had any afternoon track time in the dry. I can't be happy starting ninth at Ducati's home race, but we'll try to make our fans proud.”



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RawDawg

July 02, 2011 7:41 PM

It seems the only way Rossi is going to be fast on the Ducati is for him to adapt his style to it more because it's becoming evident that the bike isn't going to adapted to fit him. Can this happen is yet to be seen.

Sasha

July 02, 2011 9:45 PM

Eh, Daniella. The Aprilia was already the best after years of Biaggi, Harada and Capirossi. The Honda was already the best after years of Doohan. The RCV was already on the design table before Rossi came and the Yamaha profited from Furusaway pushing the crossplane crank the winter before Rossi signed.



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