ROSSI FAILS TO TAKE STEP UP
Valentino Rossi was left disheartened at the Austrian Grand Prix after missing out on his target for the weekend - the podium success that he took for the first ever time at the track back in 1996.
Battling, like everyone else on the grid, to match the ferocious acceleration of the dominant Ducatis, Rossi said afterwards that his target for the weekend was the final podium spot.
But, struggling to make the Movistar Yamaha behave the way he wanted it to – an issue compounded by Sunday’s increasing temperatures – he was forced to settle for fourth.
“In the race, we tried to help the rear tyre get to the end, and to do that we changed the balance of the bike. I was a bit in trouble braking with it, because the front locked. I tried to overtake with it, but I was running on and it was a risk. Running behind three bikes meant I was having a problem with the temperature of my brakes as well. It’s a shame because I wanted to fight with my team-mate, but the gap was always a bit too much.
“I was just three seconds away from victory and not that far from the Ducatis – but the great shame was that Lorenzo finished in front of me. He was faster and he was able to put the Yamaha on the podium.”
But while the weekend might not have delivered the result that Rossi wanted, it wasn’t a complete disaster. Finishing ahead of title leader Marc Marquez for the first time since the Barcelona round two races ago, it gave him the chance to at least make small inroads into the Spaniard’s lead.
“I am happy because we recovered two points, and if we have a hundred races now I can win the championship! Joking aside, it’s good to arrive in front of Marc though, and while the situation will change at other tracks we have to stay strong and be as fast as possible.”
Rossi wasn’t able to find the setting he was after to put his M1 on the podium