ROSSI WITH WORK TO DO IN SEASON FINALE

2008-10-25 08:39
2008 MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi faces a tough task in his quest to win his tenth race of the season tomorrow after a below-par qualifying performance left him on the fourth row in Valencia. The Italian will start from tenth with his Fiat Yamaha team-mate, Jorge Lorenzo, directly ahead of him on the grid in seventh.

After yesterday's downpour this morning's session was a little drier but still very cold, with Rossi finishing in fourth. This afternoon temperatures increased but the Italian and his team struggled throughout the session to find a good set-up for their M1 at this tight and twisty track. With the skies looking threatening Rossi began his qualifying sequence earlier than usual but his set-up problems persisted on the softer Bridgestone qualifying rubber and he was unable to set a fast enough time, meaning he will start from the head of the fourth row tomorrow in tomorrow's 30-lap race.

Position: 10th Time: 1'32.962 Laps: 26
"Today was not one of my best days; I think one of the hardest we've had all year! Yesterday in the wet we were okay but in the dry today we couldn't find the right setting and I was finding it especially hard on the exit of the corner, which meant I was then losing a lot of time in acceleration. Unfortunately we couldn't improve much with the qualifying tyres and so now we must start from tenth tomorrow. At the moment with the setting as it is I think we might only be able to finish eighth so now we need to work very hard to try to find a way to be competitive tomorrow!. We have been in this situation before though so it is not the end of the world and we will try to find a good setting in warm-up, get a good start and then have some fun! It seems that my battle with Valencia is continuing, so far she is winning but I will try to change that tomorrow!"

Team Manager
"We have a hard job ahead of us tomorrow because starting from the fourth row here is not easy. However hopefully we have set up another exciting race! Today's conditions were difficult because it was quite cold and we couldn't get the setting right to enable us to properly use our qualifying tyre. Now we have to analyse the data tonight and use the warm-up well. Our target is now to give Valentino a good enough bike to let him enjoy the race and then we know that the rest will come from him."

Qualifying Times
FRONT ROW
1. Casey Stoner (AUS) Ducati Marlboro 1'31.502
2. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda 1'31.555
3. Nicky Hayden (USA) Repsol Honda 1'31.703
SECOND ROW
4. Colin Edwards (USA) Tech 3 Yamaha 1'32.212
5. James Toseland (GBR) Tech 3 Yamaha 1'32.518
6. Randy De Puniet (FRA) LCR Honda MotoGP 1'32.572
THIRD ROW
7. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Fiat Yamaha Team 1'32.594
8. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 1'32.614
9. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) JiR Team Scot MotoGP

Source: Fiat Yamaha Team

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