Factory Yamaha MotoGP rider Valentino Rossi said that he feels good on his Yamaha YZR-M1 en route to securing a front row start for the first time since Malaysia 2018.
With FP3 rained off and a lot of FP4 being run with wet tyres, track time was limited. However, the Italian worked methodically and pushed Marc Marquez at a track he has made his own in recent years, posting the second fastest lap of the session, a 2:04.060, 0.273 seconds behind the Spaniard’s time.
Rossi said that he feels good on his bike as he looks to build on his second place from Argentina last time out.
“In Argentina I was quite good, but today I was maybe stronger,” said the 40-year-old.
“I feel good with the bike, after a strange day where in the morning we wait and wait and wait, but we don’t make FP3. After the storm it’s difficult to understand what to expect in quali.
“But fortunately the track conditions improved a lot and the track dried very quickly. But also in my case FP4 was very important because I was able to make some laps with the slick tyres and understand the point and make a good feeling with the bike.
“It’s the first row and it’s very good. From Argentina we work well on the bike, also with the tyres in all the practice, I was quite strong. We’ll see.”
Camera’s caught Rossi nearly crashing at the fast downhill turn ten when his Yamaha went over one of the remaining wet patches. Rossi said the moment was ‘quite scary but it’s okay’.
“Some people say I was in front of Cal,” he said. “But I go over the curb and I lose a little bit of control and I enter in turn ten and then in turn ten I take a wet patch, so I lose control, it’s quite fast and quite scary but it’s okay.”
Rossi received some treatment on his shoulder after FP4. Rossi was asked about this and explained what was happening.
“Yeah, I have a problem in FP4,” he explained. “Because I didn’t sort the shoulder before the practice because we didn’t make FP3, so I stayed in bed waiting and maybe it’s because of that, but I don’t have a particular problem.”