Cal Crutchlow described his mood as “pretty disappointed” after missing out on a front row start for the Japanese MotoGP race at Motegi due to a late mistake on his fastest lap in Saturday's 15-minute qualifying shootout.

The Englishman has been in strong shape all weekend, placing inside the top two in each of the weekend’s three dry free practice sessions. He was on course for pole position, too, leading Q2 with just two minutes remaining.

However a late surge of lap times from Andrea Dovizioso, Johann Zarco and Jack Miller demoted him to fourth before a mistake at the final chicane on Crutchlow’s final flying lap prevented him from improving on his 1m 44.820s.

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“[I’m] Pretty disappointed,” came Crutchlow’s response to the session. “I think the guys on the front row are fast, but I don't think Jack has the pace at the moment to be there for the whole race, or be able to have that pace.

“So the disappointing thing is we have to start behind him, and that means we have to pass him quite early on in the race. Unless he starts to go really fast tomorrow, you never know.

“But he did a good job, he did a great job to be on the front row. Also Andrea, they did superb laps. I just made a mistake on my lap, and it's my own fault, it's nobody else's. I have myself to blame, and that's it.

“I was pushing, because I wanted the pole, whereas if I probably hadn't pushed so much, I would have had the front row, so it's a bit of give and take. But we're happy enough at the moment.”

Still, looking ahead to Sunday’s race and Crutchlow is pleased with the work done through the weekend. The 32-year old is “comfortable and confident” about his prospects for the 24 laps.

“We are happy about the pace for today, the Team have worked very hard over the weekend to improve our package and be competitive, and we are. But I’m disappointed about the qualifying position.

“It would have been very helpful for tomorrow’s race to be starting on the front row. I’ve had great pace all weekend and I feel comfortable and confident for tomorrow, I look forward to seeing what happens in the race.”

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