Ducati's Cal Crutchlow made a strong improvement in FP2 at Valencia to finish free practice in a satisfying sixth place overall on the combined times on Friday.

The British rider was left worried by his pace in FP1 as he languished in 13th position, but a key set-up change made a big difference for the afternoon and Crutchlow - preparing for his final race on the Ducati ahead of his move to the LCR Honda team in 2015 - climbed the leaderboard.

His time of 1m 31.731s was 0.435s down on the day's fastest lap by Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez and Crutchlow is feeling positive ahead of final qualifying and Sunday's MotoGP season finale in Spain.

Related Articles

"Today was not so bad and our final position was sixth or seventh overall; I was 13th in the first session and quite worried, but we improved in the second session," he said.

"I was struggling with corner entry into the last corner and losing a lot of time and it was the same in the second session, but we reduced the gap a lot. We changed the geometry of the bike to a lower bike and I was pleased with the way the Ducati was working today.

"It's the bike we've been riding all year and still are finding small improvements every time we ride it. Hopefully tomorrow we can qualify well and get a good position for the race," he added.

"It will be a long race with the tyre wear on the left-hand side but overall I'm quite pleased with today's performance."

Crutchlow also aired his thoughts on a new rule change introduced this weekend for practice and qualifying sessions with safety in mind.

"They changed the rules and if there is a guy sitting in the last corner following and they gain an advantage in the lap time and it is deemed dangerous by Race Control, they will be penalised, so I can't wait to go to Race Control with the four people already who I have seen trying to gain an advantage," he said.

"We saw how much of a disaster it was with the Moto3 riders especially in Sepang and the rule is the same for everybody and it needs to be cancelled out because someone is going to get hurt some time.

"Following isn't the problem because you will always get that on track, but sitting in the last corners and looking behind you is something that needs penalised."