Valentino Rossi thrilled with late charge to fourth

By Matthew Birt -

MotoGP

 19 August 2013 09:46

Valentino Rossi salvaged a last gasp fourth place at the legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway yesterday (Sunday), but admitted he must up his game to pose a consistent threat to dominant Spanish trio Marc Marquez, Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo.

The Italian started the penultimate lap in sixth but firstly picked off Alvaro Bautista before denying Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider Cal Crutchlow fourth with a clinical overtake at the second to last corner on the final lap.

Satisfied to have fought his way through from ninth to fourth, Rossi was a little perplexed as to why it had taken him so long in the 27-lap race to find his best form.

The 34-year-old said: “I'm happy about the result and the second half of the race. When the rear tyre started to slide I ride a lot better and can enter the turns faster. With the new rear tyre and the extra grip the rear pushes the front too much and I was in trouble in the first half of the race and I was very slow.

The second half was better, so now we have to understand why because usually the problem is the opposite. But  the second half of the race was positive and my lap times very good. To leave Indy with a fourth place after starting form the third row is good result.  But if I want to try for the podium and fight with the top three guys we have to improve."

Asked how he had been able to claw back so much time in the latter stages of the race, Rossi added: “When the rear started to slide I could brake with more oversteer and release the brake 30 to 40 metres earlier and make a lot of corner speed. At the beginning of the race I couldn't do this.”

For eight pages of MotoGP news and views, including the thoughts of Casey Stoner, Jerry Burgess, Kenny Roberts, Andrea Dovizioso and Ben Spies on Cal Crutchlow’s Ducati switch, see the August 21 issue of MCN.