Demanding Qualifying for Andrea Dovizioso and Darryn Binder in #QatarGP
Following an exciting opening day, the Losail International Circuit greeted riders and teams today with dusty weather and more wind than on Friday. Yet, the amazing floodlights of the impressive venue in Qatar delivered once again a unique atmosphere for the late sessions.
WithU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team’s Andrea Dovizioso experienced a challenging Saturday. After working with tyres and settings in warm Free Practice three and four in order to prepare for the race, the Italian tried his best in Qualifying one to reach the popular top two positions, but eventually missed out by just a bit more than half a second. He will line up in row seven on the grid after finishing Q1 in tenth position.
Meanwhile, Darryn Binder, who jumps fresh from Moto3 to the MotoGP bike, was further improving his lap around lunch time today. In FP3, he managed to go 0.532 seconds quicker than on Friday to close the gap to the front further, reaching less than two seconds to the fastest rider. The South African was unlucky with his engine shutting off in Free Practice four. Therefore, he aimed for even more in Qualifying, but unfortunately crashed out, which ended his session prematurely. He will start his first ever premier class round in row eight.
The long-awaited first race day of the 2022 MotoGP World Championship season starts tomorrow with Warm Up at 13:40 local time (11:40 CET). While the red lights will go off at 18:00 local time (16:00 CET), opening a 22 laps long exciting fight for the very first championship points of the year.
“I’m disappointed because today I completely lost the feeling with the bike, and also with regards to the condition of the track; the wind was quite strong in the opposite way than yesterday, only that is the difference. I was losing the feeling completely, I couldn’t be consistent. All the positive things I found yesterday, I couldn’t keep or improve my position with the bike. Tomorrow the track can be in a totally different condition, I can come back like yesterday with the right feeling and continue to work. To start 20th is very bad, everybody would have to manage the tyres, starting from the back is not the best situation.”
“Today started off quite well. I felt, I made a good step forward in FP3. I managed to improve my time from last night, so I was really happy with that. In FP4 unfortunately, my bike stopped on the first lap, which wasn’t the greatest thing, because it disturbed our plan for the Qualifying. My first time in Qualifying was a bit crazy. You get two laps, coming in, changing the tyres and then another two and I didn’t have the best first two laps. Then unfortunately, when I changed the tyre for the second run, I was probably looking for a bit too much going into turn two and maybe I didn’t have the tyre up to temperature and I crashed. I’m disappointed how the Quali went, but I felt the step we made in FP3 was good and I think we can just pick up from there tomorrow, make the race and see what happens.”