Suzuki's Kenny Roberts had been well placed in the top ten during the majority of today's first qualifying session at Valencia, but slipped back down the order when the last rush on qualifying tyres took place.

The American's own chances of making a similar jump on the soft-compounds tyres were thwarted by niggling bike problems, almost causing him to lose control.

"I had a race tyre on in the middle of the session, and I was able to get down to some decent race times, for my settings. Then we had a problem with the bike on my last two runs. The only thing I can say is I'm lucky I didn't fall. I had to save the bike from crashing both times out," said the 2000 world champion.



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