Pol Espargaro faces an uphill task in the Argentina MotoGP after qualifying on the sixth row in 18th place.

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider failed to progress straight to Q2, missing out by 0.014s to Scott Redding, and could only finish eighth in Q1 on the satellite M1 after making a wrong decision, opting to run with a used front tyre instead of fitting new rubber.

"We should have just put the new tyre in QP1 but we thought it was enough to go QP2 and just to put a new rear on was a big mistake because I was pushing the front and I was really close to crashing sometimes," he said.

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"It was completely a disaster and at the end it was 18th place and we did everything wrong but okay, we have tomorrow to improve.

"We need to analyse what exactly happened as when I went out for my second run, which was the one where I planned to do a time attack, I realised that it was impossible to ride fast with the bike like this. To be honest, I do not know what was wrong, but I couldn't even come close to setting my fastest time of the weekend," he added.

"We have known since the beginning of the season that this type of situation could happen during the year as the level is really similar and the manufacturers who are allowed to use the softer tyres have improved their bikes a lot.

"But these are the rules for this year and we have to pass this year with these rules that are not really fair."

Espargaro is taking heart from his race pace after an encouraging performance in FP4.

"We will have to push for tomorrow and try to do our best and as we seen in FP4 we were really good with the rhythm," Espargaro said.