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Valentino Rossi hangs after qualifying with the tires

Saturday, August 12th, 2017 | Sports

Valentino Rossi starts in Spielberg from seventh place

Motorsport-Magazine.com – Valentino Rossi is in the race in Spielberg a hard piece of work. In the shadow of the fight between Marc Marquez and the Ducati, the doctor came in seventh place in qualifying. After the setback of Brno, the Yamaha driver in Austria is under pressure, if he does not want to lose more ground on the Spaniards leading the World Cup. There was good potential for a better result, as Rossi reports. But in his second attempt no improvement had been possible.

"Unfortunately, the second set of tires did not work so well, I had much less grip and less speed, I pushed to the maximum, but an improvement was impossible," Rossi described his problems. So he had to let Johann Zarco pass the last place in row two. A placement that would have been possible for him without problems, according to Rossi. "My potential would surely have been enough for the top five, if not for the front row. Sometimes it happens, this time it happened to me," he says.

Rossi's biggest surprise: Honda

That it would not be easy for Yamaha in Spielberg was already clear in advance. Particularly the first part of the stretch with the long straights and the extreme acceleration phases does not meet the M1. Maverick Vinales put his bike on position four. Compared to the previous year, however, Rossi was able to see an improvement.

Rossi must start a chase in the race

"We are closer to the Ducati, but their biggest advantage was last year, but the biggest difference is Honda, they have a lot of problems, but this year they are really strong here," he says. Rossi himself took a step forward from Friday to Saturday as he tried the new panel. This should not yet be used in Austria.
"I liked the dressing from the first test in Brno immediately, but as a team we decided together that it might not be the best track here," explains the 38-year-old. But the low competitiveness in the first sessions led to a rethink. "Yesterday we had a few wheelie problems, so we said we would test it, and it's great, it's good to drive and help me," he said.

I believe the first seven, eight drivers will be very close together tomorrow. Valentino Rossi

Rossi does not know yet whether he can also make a positive assessment after the race. "Starting from the third row is often quite difficult, even on this track, but my pace is not so bad," he says optimistically. "I'm trying to push from start to finish, and then we'll see it, we have to look at how the conditions are tomorrow, the tire selection will be decisive tomorrow, all options are possible," Rossi says. "I think the first seven, eight drivers will be very close together tomorrow."

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