Cal Crutchlow has said he was made to work for his qualifying position of tenth, as Honda's acceleration deficit was underlined at Brno, forcing the Englishman to try and make up as much time as possible under braking.
The 30-year old dusted himself down from a spill in FP4 to post a time of 1m 55.930s in qualifying, a lap that was less than a tenth of a second slower than Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa during MotoGP qualifying.
“Another day, another dollar,” began Crutchlow, who was the second fastest satellite machine in Q2. “That's about it. We're definitely working hard for it. We deserve our dollars I think.
“We were competitive enough in FP4. I was on a good lap until I crashed. This is the same old story. It's not an easy ride. We are pushing the front because we have no rear grip. I braked a little later than normal and crashed.
“Yesterday Marc [Marquez] was braking 30 metres later than me. Then I braked two metres later [than the lap before] and I crashed. This is the story. It's my mistake. I crashed the bike. I'm glad no one was hurt because the bike cleared the fence and landed on the service road.
“I felt good to get back up and go faster immediately in qualifying than I had all weekend. It's positive, shows that we're strong and able to be competitive. That's what it's about: getting back up and doing a good job.
“We could have been faster than what we were. In qualifying I rode a bit weak because I didn't want to crash again. I lost three tenths to an average lap in one corner. We'll see what we've got tomorrow.”
Crutchlow went on to clarify comments made by fellow Honda rider Jack Miller about his usage of the rear brake. Miller had said Crutchlow was using the rear brake to lessen the RC213V's 'wheelie-happy' tendencies for 80% of the lap at Brno. He had used it for eleven when he last raced Yamaha's M1 here.
“That's true,” replied Crutchlow when asked if Miller's comments were correct. “I have to give you one piece of information: this track is not that bad. You can imagine at other circuits.
“But don't get me wrong, you have to use the rear brake to ride our bike. That's the way of it. The comparison to the other manufacturer is real. I can tell you that. It's a lot less [with Yamaha].
“It's a lack of grip and then power. Then we wheelie. And when we're doing this we have to use the anti-wheelie, or the rear brake, where the other bikes don't seem to wheelie so much.”
On whether he has found a way to make the Honda more agile through Brno's numerous changes of direction, Crutchlow said he was still finding it very physical.
“It's not a massive drama or a massive problem. It's difficult enough to ride. We have to manually ride the bike quite a lot.
“But we also have to put in there that Honda are listening to our comments week in week out. They're doing the job we're asking them to do. It's just with the engine sealed it's difficult to change what we need.”