Andrea Dovizioso had higher expectations than sixth place at Ducati's home round of the MotoGP World Championship at Misano.
The Italian rider, who also qualified sixth fastest, finished one place ahead of wild card rider Michele Pirro, who was riding the full factory Desmosedici GP16 after Andrea Iannone was ruled out of the race following a practice spill, sustaining a fracture of the T3 vertebra.
“It's a pity because today I expected to get a different result in the race. Unfortunately we are still struggling to get the bike to turn like our rivals and as the laps go by this difference increases,” said Dovizioso.
“To reduce the gap I have to use a lot of energy, push hard on the handlebars and my riding style becomes less smooth and a bit more ragged. To do a consistent lap it's better that I don't push hard in the early laps, but we are forced to do so to remain with the leading group.”
Pirro, meanwhile, felt he lost too much ground on the opening laps as he settled into a rhythm.
“I gave away a bit too much at the start today: losing three or four seconds early on makes things all the more difficult, but it's not easy to quickly find the right feeling to start well when you only take part in MotoGP occasionally like I do.
“In the race I managed to be quite consistent and I didn't finish too far behind my team-mate. I want to thank Ducati for everything, because it's been a great weekend; yesterday I was fifth in qualifying, this morning third in the warm-up and today in amongst the leading group in the race,” he added.
“I also want to wish Andrea Iannone a speedy recovery and tell him that today I treated his bike well and that at Aragon he'll find it in the same condition as he left it!”