It wasn’t a particularly exciting qualifying day for Suzuki: Joan Mir didn’t make it into Q2 and ended up in 17th place behind Valentino Rossi. Things went a little better for Alex Rins: He starts from the fourth row, in 11th position.
“Everything went wrong, we improved on yesterday, but we were still missing something in the fourth sector and I couldn’t go into the final corners as I wanted – explained the world champion – but we are fast on this track, it is a shame. We also had a problem with the front and during FP3 I couldn’t go a few tenths straight into Q2. In the afternoon the problem with the front worsened and the yellow flags were the coup de grace. I understand safety on the track is important, but it was still frustrating. “
You mentioned a problem with the front in the final corners. Is it a question of the tires?
“It’s strange, the temperatures are very high and usually the Suzukis don’t drive with hard rubber compounds up front. We have always done well with the media. I’m not sure if it’s the right choice for tomorrow’s race because I do have done.” I don’t have a good feeling with the bike, but it’s not just a tire problem, I think it’s more a question of the setup in general, but compared to yesterday’s free practice we have improved a lot, almost a second and a half difference in any case not the Sachsenring that I imagined “.
Everything we thought we knew about the Sachsenring turns out to be wrong this weekend. It shouldn’t be a cheap stretch for the Ducatis and Yamahas, and there are two in the front row. Suzuki should have an advantage and instead they are missing something. What’s happening?
“First we have to consider that Ducati has made enormous development progress this year. The track conditions are also almost extreme, maybe the temperatures favor the Ducatis, but with absolute certainty I can’t say as well as I wanted, I didn’t feel the bike. It’s not even the team’s fault, I think they are did a great job, it’s frustrating that I’m one of the first in the first sectors with the times and then in the fourth sector I lose everything, something is definitely wrong, but To see that Alex Rins does well on this section of the track gives me hope that by collecting and collating all the data we can find out before tomorrow’s race “.
What is the strategy for tomorrow on a track where overtaking is difficult?
“If we solve the problem in the fourth sector of the track and keep the race pace well, we can be competitive and get into the top ten, but 17th on the grid is still a disadvantage.”
Alex Rins is still injured but keeps up the pace
The result of his team-mate Alex Rins was somewhat more positive. The Spaniard, still injured in the hand, first hit the finish line in Q2 after entering Q1, but lost pace in the final laps and finished 11th on the grid, wedged between the bikes of Bagnaia and Alex Marquez.
“Overall, I’m satisfied, despite the problem in my hand, we have a good race pace and we managed to stay among the first, I drove a good lap in Q1, but unfortunately Q2 didn’t go as I did I hoped it would. What punished me the most were the drivers who were slow in the middle of the track, we continue to discuss this in the safety commission and every time history repeats itself and nothing is resolved, I think we need to start taking a tougher stance on these situations “.
What do you think should be done about it?
“Seeing all of these drivers waiting to be towed is a problem that must be resolved with penalties. We are all experienced drivers and can do good laps on our own if you are towed, be it that way, but this situation is starting to get frustrating “.
How is your physical condition for tomorrow’s race?
“My hand is starting to hurt a lot, I did the FP3 on pain killers, but the racing pace and results are good so I’ll be racing despite the pain. It will be a tough race with few opportunities to overtake, So the goal will definitely be to keep a good pace and finish. Tire management will also be important, you can see the drop in performance after just seven laps ”.