At the end of qualifying day for the British Grand Prix, Cal Crutchlow voiced his frustration at a mistake that he feels cost him a second straight home pole position, but was nonetheless pleased at his overall performance in England across the weekend.

Along with fellow front row sitters Marc Marquez (first), Valentino Rossi (second) and second row qualifier Andrea Dovizioso (sixth), the Englishman was among several names on course to break the much-vaunted 2-minute barrier at the Silverstone track in the dying minutes of qualifying.

Ultimately Marquez was the only name to do so, while a mistake at turn 13 on Crutchlow’s final flying lap cost the Englishman a reported three tenths of a second – an amount that would have seen him outpace even the championship leader by over a tenth of a second.

“I’m never comfortable but it’s coming alright and better than most of the guys so that’s handy,” said Crutchlow on Saturday evening. “I feel good on the bike and we haven’t done many things over the weekend.

“I didn't sleep last night for some reason. I had no grip today compared to yesterday; I think the rain washed our grip away. Marc is always a little bit better than any other Honda rider when there is no grip, apart from Dani. This afternoon I felt good and was able to do a good pace but I was pissed off I didn't get pole."

So what happened on his final flying lap? “I out-braked myself,” he said. “I went really long into Turn 13. I lost three tenths and I was one and a half off the pole. It was my mistake but I was pushing. I honestly didn't care if I was first, second or third but I wanted to be under two minutes because I know next year it will be really hard.”

Crutchlow was one of four riders to show the pace to challenge toward the front of Sunday’s race around the historic Northamptonshire track. In his opinion, it is pole sitter Marquez that carries the greatest threat for the top honours.

“Marc [is the favourite], because I see him riding in a certain way," Crutchlow said. “Sure he crashed yesterday but he has a lot more wheels in line than he usually does. He seems to riding the bike in a different way. He seems smoother to me.

“When he takes a risk he still seems quite wild but over an average lap he seems smoother and that means it’s coming easily. Maverick and Vale also and I think Maverick might have a bit better pace but Valentino is as fast as anyone on the grid.”

Pressed on whether Marquez’s recent form that includes two wins, a second place and three pole positions from the past three outings stems from dramatic changes to the RC213V, Crutchlow responded, “They did the same as me and I didn't copy them and they have gone our way most of the year.

“That's why it works well because we assess those things and know what works but it takes those guys longer to come out of the bubble because they are already so fast so why would they want to change? It takes some time.

“With the exhaust earlier in the year it took Dani [Pedrosa] a long time to not use that exhaust. We knew it was better but when you are already fast then why change? I fully understand that but they have come to similar setting with the bike give or take, everyone is a little bit different.”



Loading Comments...