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Qatar MotoGP: 'Unfamiliar territory' as Crutchlow heads for Q1

Cal Crutchlow misses out on top ten place after Friday's MotoGP practice sessions in Qatar.
Cal Crutchlow will not get direct access to the Qualifying 2 pole position shootout for the Qatar MotoGP after being left outside of the top ten in Friday practice.

Making his Factory Ducati debut, Crutchlow's FP3 session was disrupted by an early lowside fall and - even with the aid of the Open class soft tyre - he was unable to advance higher than twelfth place.

That means Crutchlow, renowned for his qualifying pace at Tech 3 Yamaha, will have to take part in Saturday's Qualifying 1 session, where only the fastest two riders then progress to Qualifying 2.

“It was a disappointing day and I'm not very happy at all,” said the Englishman. “We didn't find a good setting with the bike, and even though we made a lot of changes from the first session, it felt more or less the same.

“I also had a crash in the third session, but the positive thing is that we got up and went a little bit faster with the second bike.”

Crutchlow, who claimed seven front row starts last season, added: “Unfortunately now we have to take part in Q1 tomorrow, and that's unfamiliar territory for me because I've been used to qualifying close to the front for the last two years. Things are difficult at the moment, but there's no doubt the team are working hard to sort things out.”

Team-mate Andrea Dovizioso did gain ground with the soft tyre, setting the fourth fastest lap time, with Pramac's Andrea Iannone an excellent second.

Crutchlow's Tech 3 replacement Pol Espargaro is the other notable name to miss out on direct access to Qualifying 2.

Tagged as: Ducati , Cal Crutchlow

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