During the four races Dovizioso has claimed just three points in what’s quickly becoming a 2022 MotoGP season to forget for the three-time runner-up.
Of course, there is plenty of time left to turn things around, however, every race weekend seems to demonstrate the same level of form and performance, despite going above and beyond in terms of effort.
“I expected a bit more. I’m honestly very disappointed,” said a gutted Dovizioso following Sunday’s race.
“My feeling is not improving while trying to reduce the gap and I can’t be happy about that. I tried to be consistent, but when you don’t ride in a relaxed way, you use more energy in the practices already, so I didn’t have a lot of energy left for the race itself.
“I was fighting with Marini, Oliveira and Morbidelli, but we haven’t been fast and that’s not a good feeling.
“At the end, we got one point, but the 29 seconds is the fact that we have to check. The gap to the top is big. I’m not happy, but I didn’t have the feeling to be any faster. ”
For team-mate Darryn Binder, the American MotoGP was arguably his most difficult weekend of the season.
The South African was a considerable way off the pace in qualifying, not only compared to the leading riders, but also his fellow rookies.
A pair of crashes prior to the race didn’t help things as Binder alluded to losing a bit of confidence, before technical issues impacted the final few laps.
“All together it has been a difficult weekend, I crashed a couple of times, which definitely did not help with my confidence going into the race,” added the ex-Moto3 rider. “Anyway, I started the race and made a mistake at the beginning, which made me fall back a couple of positions.
“I then caught back up to a couple of guys and was fighting with the other rookies for a while, unfortunately we had a little technical issue and I had to stop at the pit lane with three laps to go.
“Overall, I felt like I learned a lot from this weekend. It’s been a really hard weekend physically and riding this bike around this track is super demanding. I’m just glad I was able to get a lot of laps and now I know exactly on what I need to work on, get stronger and fitter and be ready for Portimao.”
It’s not just RNF who are struggling, where is the ‘real’ Franco Morbidelli?
One of the more curious storylines of 2022 is the form, or lack thereof from Franco Morbidelli.
Aside from the odd top ten result in Mandalika, Morbidelli has failed to reach anywhere close to the level of Fabio Quartararo.
The Italian, who is now fully fit for the first time since the beginning of 2021, has struggled with both qualifying and race pace – the latter proving key to his rise to second in the 2020 season.
Morbidelli eventually finished 23 seconds down on Quartararo, who himself was close to seven seconds away from race winner Enea Bastianini.
A return to Europe could be what Morbidelli needs as the flyaway rounds have been somewhat of a disaster, even if the 2017 Moto2 champion is yet to admit it.
Speaking after Sunday’s race, Morbidelli said: “It was a tricky race because finally we used a different setting for the warm-up, but we couldn’t try it, so I needed to try it in the race.
“Actually, I wasn’t feeling so bad, but it needed adjustments, and I needed to learn how to ride with it during the race.
“So, I learned it step by step and lap by lap. It was nice, because I could overtake, that’s positive.
“We will keep working and trying to understand what we need, and we will try to get back stronger in Portimao.”