MotoGP Le Mans Day 2 Rider Quotes

MotoGP 2016 coverage brought to you by Honda Genuine Oils
MotoGP 2016 coverage brought to you by Honda Genuine Oils and Chemicals
Jorge Lorenzo – P1

“From the beginning, the first practice on Friday, everything went very well already with our first setting. Little by little and practice by practice together with the whole team we improved small details in all the corners to create a bike that allowed me to keep a constant pace. I was using the same old tyres throughout free practice 4 and normally that means that when you use new tyres you can be very fast and that’s what happened today. I didn’t expect to set such an unbelievable lap time, but sometimes the lap time surprises you and I’m very happy with the pole position and the lap record and especially with the work we did with the whole team on the bike.”

Jorge Lorenzo
Jorge Lorenzo
Massimo Meregalli – Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team Director

“We are very happy for Jorge, this pole position was most certainly deserved. He was fast straight out of the box at the start of qualifying and he rode a perfect lap at the end, a superb 1’31.975s. This stunning lap, as well as the pace he has shown us all weekend, highlight how strong the combination of him and his YZR-M1 are at this circuit and this is a good sign for tomorrow’s race. It will be a bit more challenging for Vale, who will be starting from seventh place. The qualifying session doesn’t reflect his real potential, because a mistake cost him a few tenths of a second. He is feeling good on the bike after they found a good set-up and this gives him a good confidence to take on the competition tomorrow. We will make some final amendments to the settings, which we will test in the warm-up tomorrow and look forward to another great race.”

Valentino Rossi
Valentino Rossi
Marc Marquez – P2

“I was able to set a good lap today, but it wasn’t perfect. At first with the new tyre I found it hard to get the same feeling I had with used tyres and the bike moved about a lot when I tried to push more. At the end I changed my riding style a little and set two pretty good laps that helped me to fulfil my main objective, which was to get on the front row. I think the pace that I have isn’t bad, and in the last free practice I felt comfortable, although I’m still not quite as fast as Jorge [Lorenzo]. We’ll see what weather we have tomorrow and what the track temperature is for the race, and try to manage things as best we can.”

Marc Marquez
Marc Marquez
Andrea Iannone – P3

“It wasn’t an easy qualifying session and, even though I am happy for the front row, I’m not entirely satisfied because I was convinced I could have got second place. In any case, looking at the way things went, we even ran the risk of losing third place and luckily my time with the first tyre was enough to keep the front row slot. I am sure that with the second tyre I could have improved by a few tenths, but on the second exit unfortunately I had a problem with my bike. A light went on for the water pressure in the system and then I suddenly crashed. In any case I’m happy because we managed to get a positive result and I want to thank the guys in the team who did a great job after Jerez.”

Andrea Iannone
Andrea Iannone
Pol Espargaro – P4

“It’s a really positive feeling to get back on the second row as I have had to wait since Aragon last season. Having said that, I feel that we definitely deserve it this weekend for the performances that we have shown in all the sessions. Yet, we have to bear in mind that tomorrow will be another story. However, the good thing is that by starting from the second row of the grid, we have a better chance of following the factory riders for at least the first part of the race, which means I can learn from them and enjoy the riding. Furthermore, I really like the new Michelin tyres because they allow me to ride my bike how I want to and the times come more easily for me which of course, gives me confidence. It goes without saying that it’s a pity that we just missed out on the front row by only 0.033 of a second but there are a lot of the Factory guys behind me and this is what we will also aim for tomorrow. Therefore, I will try to get a good start and then fight all the way to the chequered flag in order to give the French fans and the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team something to cheer about.”

Pol Espargaro
Pol Espargaro
Andrea Dovizioso – P5

“I am quite pleased with the way the day went. In the afternoon we were able to improve my feeling with the bike by making another small step forward and, even though maybe we are still missing a bit over race pace, tomorrow I should be in a position to fight for the podium. It’s a pity I was not able to get on the front row in qualifying, but unfortunately in my final attempt I went a bit too long at Turn 13 because when I changed gear, the bike had a sudden reaction and now we have to try and understand the reason for this.”

Andrea Dovizioso
Andrea Dovizioso

Bradley Smith – P6

“First of all, it was great to go directly through to Q2 and it was the first time this year that we’ve achieved this, so I think the team added another year to their lives because Q1 is obviously quite stressful! All day we’ve slowly been improving the bike and I’m feeling more comfortable all the time. With every lap I’m learning and getting faster so even though we still need to make some final adjustments for the race, I believe that we have a strong base setting. In terms of the result, I can’t really be any happier as we have turned around what has been a difficult first four races. To be on the second row at the team’s home Grand Prix which is also sponsored by our title backer, Monster Energy, is great. It gives me a fantastic opportunity to start well tomorrow and then try to gain some more knowledge from fighting with the front guys. I believe the race will be another learning experience for me because of the new setting, which I haven’t tried on a long run yet, and also the tyres but I will be as prepared as possible. Anyway, the team did a fantastic job and they’ve had a lot of patience during these opening events, so to finally reward them and get back to where we need to be is super and I must give a big thanks to them. I am ready for the team’s home race and tomorrow will be 28 laps of fighting to get that top satellite position.”

Bradley Smith
Bradley Smith
Valentino Rossi – P7

“Unfortunately I made a lot of mistakes because we had different strategies that didn’t work and I was stuck in traffic, I lost time. I had one chance at the end to improve my lap time, because my potential was a little bit faster and I could have stayed in the top five, I think, but I made a mistake on braking in turn six and went outside the track. It’s a shame because we improved from yesterday and we are quite competitive in terms of race pace but I have to start from the third row. It looks like, if we want to have a really good race, we have to improve a bit because there are some areas that I’m not strong enough. If we’re able to make this jump, we will be able to do a good race, but it will be hard when you start from the third row.”

Valentino Rossi
Valentino Rossi
Maverick Viñales – P8

“This has been a very hard qualifying; I’m not satisfied with the position but most of all I’m disappointed for the feeling I couldn’t find. Honestly it is something I can’t really explain; in Jerez we found very good solutions while here they don’t seem to be working. We still lack in the set-up, we’re not taking the 100% out of our machine and this is a pity. I spoke with my technicians and they already have some ideas, we will speak further tonight and hopefully they will find a good set-up for tomorrow morning. The race will be tough; we need to find some solutions otherwise it will be very hard to get a good result.”

Maverick Vinales
Maverick Vinales

Davide Brivio – Suzuki Team Manager

“This qualifying has for sure been under expectations for us. Unfortunately, both riders struggled to find a good feeling with the machines and they couldn’t be as effective as we were used to. It’s a pity because after the tests in Jerez we were pretty confident we could have good solutions here, but it’s sure that we need more time to finalise better set-ups. We knew this track would be not easy for us, but maybe we weren’t expecting it to be this hard. However, we still have some solutions that could help the riders to find more efficacy, so we will work during the night to find some different set-ups that can be tested in warm up and hopefully be good for the race.”

Cal Crutchlow
Cal Crutchlow
Cal Crutchlow – P9

“Today was a better day and I felt quite good during FP3 and FP4. The bike was working well and our pace wasn’t too bad, however when I went out for qualifying and I had a massive vibration with the front. When I was on the bike I wasn’t sure where it was coming from, and although you could still ride it, I would have risked crashing. We’re still investigating it now. I came back in and went back out on a new tyre, with new brakes, but the system needed more bleeding and I did my lap with the brake lever almost back to the handlebar. I tried to ride around it by braking earlier and carrying more corner speed, so in the end we’re ninth on the grid, just because of a bit of bad luck in having an unexpected tyre change. It’s disappointing to be where we are, but we work together as a team and with Michelin and these things happen sometimes. It’s going to be a warzone tomorrow I reckon because there are a lots of riders in a similar pace! I’m excited about it because I’m riding the bike well and feel in good shape. It is better than it looks.”

Cal Crutchlow
Cal Crutchlow
Danilo Petrucci – P10

“To be honest on Thursday I did not even know if I could get here. The crash was my mistake: I passed the finish line two seconds before the checkered flag, I took Marquez and I was pushing, perhaps too much. I’m happy because in FP3 I did not find confidence, especially with a full tank. Tomorrow I’ll have to be careful on the first five or six laps. I have to be calm in order to save energy and get to the finish without falling like today. I so much lacked the MotoGP that I could not stop myself. Thanks to the team that has helped me a lot. I feel great with them.”

Danilo Petrucci
Danilo Petrucci
Dani Pedrosa – P11

“Well I’m obviously disappointed with today’s result, my worst qualifying this year. There isn’t much to say; I lost the front and crashed out with my first bike and I couldn’t complete my second flying lap. With the second bike, I didn’t have the same feeling and I wasn’t able to improve my time. Anyway, my race pace may not be the best but it’s not the worst either so tomorrow we’ll try to make the right tyre choice and to start the race well.”

Dani Pedrosa
Dani Pedrosa
Aleix Espargaró – P12

“We are suffering a lot and honestly we weren’t expecting this. Unfortunately, this morning I had a crash, it was totally my mistake and this took us away some precious time, I had to go through Q1 and finally got a fourth row. This makes the race very hard. The good thing is that even if we are not performing on the single lap we made important improvements on the pace; if I manage to make a good start I think we can have some chances to recover and finally get a good position.”

Aleix Espargaro
Aleix Espargaro
Hector Barbera – P13

“Although the position is not the best, all in all today was a positive day. I felt comfortable with the race settings and my pace is consistant. I was not able to do a fast lap and move up to Q2, but I’m happy with my lap time because I did it without any reference. The bike is ready to race and me too. With 28 laps, the races are always long here at Le Mans and you have to be smart. This is not our best qualifying of the season, but I have a good group in the fourth row so the start and the first three laps will be crucial tomorrow.”

Hector Barbera
Hector Barbera
Scott Redding – P14

“It is a rather strange situation that I have to figure out, because to be honest the feeling with the bike seemed ok but I was not able to improve my lap-times. I tried to get into Q2, I was close but not close enough. I honestly do not know what to expect for tomorrow. We still have to choose the tyre because we had both positive and negative directions from the solutions we tested. The FP4 lap-time? Certainly I can not be happy for the time of a single lap on race pace but it is something in which we can work to make a good race tomorrow.”

Scott Redding
Scott Redding
Yonny Hernández – P15

“We have made significant changes to the bike with the front fork: We have set it up a little softer and it has improved my feeling compared to yesterday. Tomorrow we hope to make some final modifications to improve our race pace -because in qualifying we managed one good lap, but tomorrow there will be twenty-eight. My intention is to get back into the points and finish in the first ten or twelve. I want to thank the team because we have worked very hard together to try to lower our times. In qualifying we could have done a little better, but I think we have improved significantly and this is very positive.”

Yonny Hernandez
Yonny Hernandez
Eugene Laverty – P16

“I set a reasonable lap. I expected the position to be better, because I did a good lap on the first tyre and then improved to 1:33.4. I looked up at the big screen and saw the position when I passed the chequered flag, and it was less than I expected. It’s Saturday though -Sunday is the important day. It’s always nice to qualify a little bit better, but I just need to try to make a good start -a first two laps like I did at Jerez would be perfect. Our pace was good in FP4, so that’s a plus for us when you consider we were on a used tyre then. Having gone three seconds faster than in FP1, we’ve taken a huge step forward”.   

Eugene Laverty
Eugene Laverty
Stefan Bradl – P17

“I can’t say that I’m disappointed because in qualifying I really gave it 100%. This weekend is proving to be more difficult than expected. Today we tried a lot of very different solutions again, trying to improve in the acceleration phase. Now we’ll try to analyse the data in order to try to improve for the race, making a few changes to the electronics and the rear suspension settings”.

Stefan Bradl
Stefan Bradl
Jack Miller – P18

“In qualifying I struggled to warm the tyre up and wasn’t able to do a flying lap straightaway and then I ran out of time at the end of the session. I’m quite happy with my race pace and looking forward to making a strong start and seeing what I can do and fight for some points.”

Jack Miller
Jack Miller
Alvaro Bautista – P19

“In the two sessions today we took a few steps forward. However, there are still a few difficulties with the rear. If we try to stabilise the bike by increasing the electronic controls, we lose acceleration, whereas if we unleash the power, the bike tends to move around a lot. In qualifying I tried to push but I was unable to take a better placement in this situation. We are pretty sure about the tyre choice for the race tomorrow. I rode race distance with the option that we’ll use tomorrow, so I’ll be giving it my all. Let’s hope we’ll be able to learn a lot from the 28 laps of the race”.

Alvaro Bautista
Alvaro Bautista
Tito Rabat – P20

“My first qualifying run was very good and I was happy with this for my first time in MotoGP at Le Mans. On the second run I tried to go faster and had a clear track but then came across some traffic that slowed my rhythm. Sometimes this can happen so now I am just focussing on a strong race and making up some positions.”

Tito Rabat
Tito Rabat

Loris Baz – P21

“This was probably the worst day of my life riding a bike. Everybody improved today compared to Friday, except me. We have a lot of problems with the bike and we were not able to find a solution. Basically we have two big problems: first the bike does not turn, and when we find a set up to make it turn, we have a lot of chatter on the front end. We tried six different set-ups and three different tyres, but nothing works and my lap times are always the same. Tomorrow we will try to find a solution in the warm up, but miracles don’t exist in this sport…only rain could help us tomorrow.”

Loris Baz
Loris Baz
MotoGP 2016 coverage brought to you by Honda Genuine Oils
MotoGP 2016 coverage brought to you by Honda Genuine Oils and Chemicals