DE ANGELIS AND ELIAS SUFFER QUALIFYING SETBACKS AT ASSEN San Carlo Honda Gresini Team riders Alex de Angelis and Toni Elias were both left to rue crucial setbacks that cost them time and grid positions for tomorrow's Dutch TT, following a ...
DE ANGELIS AND ELIAS SUFFER QUALIFYING SETBACKS AT ASSEN
San Carlo Honda Gresini Team riders Alex de Angelis and Toni Elias were both left to rue crucial setbacks that cost them time and grid positions for tomorrow's Dutch TT, following a disappointing finale to this afternoon's qualifying session at Assen. The pair will start from the fourth and fifth rows of the grid respectively after qualifying eleventh and fifteenth fastest.
De Angelis' position and performance were encouraging but could have been much better, were he not held up by slower riders in the last few corners of his final flying lap. Whilst the San Marinese missed out on a potential third row start through no fault of his own, his team-mate Elias accepted full responsibility for the disappointment on his side of the garage, admitting a tactical error in the closing stages.
Alex De Angelis (11th; 1'37.637): "Overall I'm quite satisfied with our performance today -- it's just a shame that Capirossi and Talmacsi got in my way through the last couple of corners of my last lap because I know I could have gone much faster. I'm sure Loris didn't do it on purpose but he is very experienced and it was a big mistake for him to make. I'm not angry but obviously very frustrated because I'm sure I would have moved ahead of De Puniet on the grid and maybe even Toseland, which would have meant an extra row and that would have been really important to me. The good thing is that I did a 1'38.0 on a race tyre and that is encouraging for tomorrow, even though I think it's going to rain."
Toni Elias (15th 1'38.136): "To be honest everything worked better today but in the end I screwed it up. I have to hold my hands up and say that I made the wrong decision and it is my fault we're down in 15th place, which is not good enough, so I want to apologise to the team. Basically I spent the last few laps looking for a tow but by the time I got one and tried to push for a good grid position, the tyre temperature had dropped too low. It was the last lap and it didn't work out like I thought it would. We can't do anything about it now -- the only option is to get a good start and pull back as many positions as I can."
Fausto Gresini - Team Manager: "We seem to be working very hard for very little return at the moment. I'm obviously disappointed by that but we will continue as we are doing and eventually I know the results will come. Everybody has to take responsibility, myself included, to make sure that our riders start to move up the order and start performing at a level that reflects the true potential of this team structure and the machinery available to us."