Fabio Quartararo insists he's not dwelling on losing the MotoGP title, which he had held since the start of this season, due to soaring front tyre pressure last Sunday at Aragon.

"I was angry at the finish line, I just screamed, but when I arrived at the pit box I needed to be calm," he said. "This was tough for me and it was the only thing I can be happy about on Sunday, that I stayed calm."

Looking ahead, the young Frenchman, the only rider to win more than a single race this year, says he would happily have signed up for second in the standings with four rounds to go.

"I have nothing to lose," Quartararo said. "When I was jumping up from Moto2, if someone told me that I’d be second in the MotoGP championship with 4 races to go in only my second year, in a team that was only born last year, I would have signed.

"I’ll do my best. I think we have the potential to fight. We’ll not give up. This is a tough track for us, but we know that Portimao and Valencia will be great.

"I'll give my 100% to this race and for sure we’ll be on it until the last moment."

The Petronas Yamaha rider has also been keen to point out that his three closest opponents - new title leader Joan Mir (Suzuki) plus Maverick Vinales (Yamaha) and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) - all ride for factory teams.

Quartararo's first priority for this weekend's second Aragon event will be to avoid a repeat of the tyre pressure problem that saw him sink from pole position to 18th place.

"The medium front tyre was the correct choice for the race. I can confirm today that medium is better than the soft," he said. "It was just that we didn't have a lot of experience [to set the starting pressure].

"The problem was, we think, because we don’t find something really clear, but for my riding style – we have a protocol, Franco and me, that we need to start with a minimum pressure.

"Both start with the same pressure and the one of Franco was okay, maybe [it went] a little high. But mine was just out of control. This only reason I see is the riding style and something like that. But for me the choice of the medium front was totally the right one."

Quartararo, now six points from Mir, got a good look at both the new title leader and his Aragon winning team-mate Alex Rins during practice for the Teruel round.

"For me it was really good to follow both Suzuki riders because it was clear where we lose time," he said. "I won’t say where, but it was clear to see almost all of track we’re really similar. But there are 2-3 points where they are much faster than us. This something we really need to improve for race pace and will be really important."

Quartararo finished the opening day one place ahead of Mir, in fourth, with Vinales in second place and Dovizioso just 19th.

"Today was a day where I needed to try things on the bike," Quartararo said. "We know that in these second back-to-back GPs if you do nothing you become more far away.

"Today we tried many thing. Some positive, some not really good. In general, I was happy with second run in FP2. That was for us quite great.

"Normally after 10-12 laps last weekend the drop of tyre was way too big. Today it was still okay after 15 laps. That was the point where we really struggled last week.

"Now we have to keep going in this way. Working on race pace because we know on one lap we are fast.

"Today I was a bit lost because riding all day with the medium rear and suddenly at the end we put the new soft was a bit strange. But happy about FP2 in general."

Quartararo, who doesn't think he has tried the new Ohlins rear shock (update, it seems he has!), confirmed that he only uses the Yamaha ride height device once per lap at Aragon, out of turn 15 and onto the 1km back straight.

"I have it on the left hand. It's always really difficult to use it on the lean angle," Quartararo explained. "Not just for me but for all Yamaha riders. In this track we use it only in one corner and it’s not so bad. It’s really tough to use it in best way possible so we use it only when we really feel that it’s necessary."

Team-mate Franco Morbidelli was 15th quickest.

 

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