Quartararo: ‘We are engine limited in a lot of places, grip is much lower’

Reigning MotoGP champion Fabio Quartararo appears destined for yet another gruelling battle with Ducati after qualifying in the middle of six Ducati riders, but can he realistically fight them? 
Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha MotoGP Buriram
Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha MotoGP Buriram

Two tenths off pole at a circuit that has again had Ducati dominance written all over it this weekend, Quartararo has positioned himself in the perfect place to launch an attack on Ducati and title rival Francesco Bagnaia.

The Italian, who qualified one spot ahead of Quartararo in third, does have the added benefit of being surrounded by fellow Ducati riders, plus advantages when it comes to overtaking also lie in the Ducati riders corner. 

However, Quartararo has been one of the strongest when it comes to race pace, while also being extremely strong in the final part of the lap.

Quartararo could also face challenges from the likes of Marc Marquez, who has also been very strong with regards to race pace, but saying that, the biggest obstacle to overcome for the Frenchman could be the lack of top speed from his M1, which has again been highlighted at Buriram. 

"Today was tough because I felt like we had a great potential especially for the pace," said Quartararo. "I went out with old tyres and felt quite fast and the time attack I gave my best, but we know we are engine limited in a lot of places. 

"We know how much we lose in the straights and even if I had a slipstream from one to three and three to four, even from the last corner to the next lap [it might not have made a difference]. Anyway, I gave my maximum. 

Fabio Quartararo Thailand MotoGP. 30 September
Fabio Quartararo Thailand MotoGP. 30 September

"Last corner is the only one I can do and I felt really good,” said Quartararo when discussing if he can overtake. 

"Especially [turns] nine, ten - corner ten I can carry a lot of speed and prepare something in the last corner just for the last lap. I think it’s the only place where I can try something."

Check out Crash.net's top four MotoGP riders that shocked us from qualifying at Buriram and see whether Quartararo was on the list?

Grip much higher at 2019 Thai MotoGP - Quartararo

Despite MotoGP machines being much quicker in 2022 compared to 2019, Quartararo was unable to match his pole time from three years ago. 

Putting it down to a considerable lack of grip, Quartararo stated: "The grip was much higher. I think that we made a great lap today but I don’t know. 

"The grip I had was much better and we can clearly see the grip is much lower. Of course, our bike is a bit faster on the straight but with the grip we have now compared to three years ago is totally different." 

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