Intermittent heavy downpours disrupted Saturday’s usual proceedings at Silverstone. The MotoGP FP4 session was red-flagged when several riders crashed in a matter of seconds, due to a pool of water created by the rain at the braking point of turn seven.
After several delays due to the track’s safety conditions, QP1 took place on a wet surface; unfortunately, Dani Pedrosa failed to improve enough to qualify for QP2 and will start the race from the sixth row of the grid.
QP2 was also delayed before finally taking place on a partially wet track. With the fifth-fastest time, Marc Marquez secured a second-row start for tomorrow’s British GP, which has had its start time moved forward to 11:30 a.m. due to the risk of heavy rain in the afternoon.
“I’m satisfied with the result because the conditions were very special today, in that it wasn’t as a ‘flag-to-flag’ situation, with the track passing from dry to wet or vice-versa. Here, we had one part of the track completely wet and the other part completely dry. I struggled a bit, maybe because my riding style is somewhat aggressive, or maybe I wasn’t able to find the right balance. Anyway, we saved the day and we’re on the second row, just a few metres from the front, which is positive. It looks like tomorrow could be another tricky day, possibly with heavy rain, so it will be important to analyse the track conditions and try to stay up there. We also must consider that if the conditions are like what we had at the end of FP4, we cannot race. The aquaplaning was very dangerous; I nearly crashed, and many other riders fell almost one after the other. Depending on the situation, Race Direction needs to evaluate what to do, but they have a lot of experience and I’m sure they’ll make the best decision.”
“I missed the passage to Q2, and it was my mistake; the team had done a great job. I was feeling good because when the track is half and half, the tyres warm up a lot in the dry sector and get into a good temperature by the time you hit the wet part. Actually, they even had too much temperature, and that’s why I slowed down before going for a final flying lap. Watching the big screen, I calculated that I could make it, but I missed it by just a fraction—my fault completely. Now we’ll see what happens tomorrow. Forecasts are for steady rain, and that can be a problem. I wasn’t on track at the end of FP4 when the aquaplaning problem arose, but I saw what happened and Marc said it was very dangerous out there. We must wait and see what conditions there are tomorrow.”
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