Valentino Rossi probably can’t wait for November when he ends his Ducati nightmare after the Italian suffered a humiliating defeat at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway yesterday (Sunday).
Rossi was seventh but it was the manner of his defeat that left the 33-year-old deflated after he finished a massive 57 seconds behind race winner Dani Pedrosa in a race that provided only fleeting moments of entertainment for a crowd of just over 65,000 fans.
The 33-year-old, who will move back to Yamaha in 2013 after a disastrous stint with Ducati, told MCN: “It was a very tough weekend but we expected it because also last year it was very difficult and I think this is the most difficult track. For me except for the victory in the first year I am not very fast at this track, but also the Ducati last year and this we had big, big trouble .We have a lot of problems but especially when the track goes on the left. I have a lot more problem with this bike on the left compared to the right and also in Laguna, especially with the 2012 model, I don’t feel confident or good on the bike and I am more slow than normal. The good thing is that I don’t crash, so I don’t make the same mistake as Laguna. It is not a very important thing but something positive.”
Big early front-end moments saw Rossi make the surprise admission that he had not pushed at 100% after the first three laps and he added: “I don’t know if it is the worst race of my career but I give up very much. After two or three laps I have two or three moments on the front and now the problem is that everybody is fast. Sixth place was 25 seconds ahead of me so if you want to go you have to push a lot. After the two big moments I don’t want to crash another time and I saw I was in seventh place and I just cruised with the bike not to make any mistake like in Laguna. But anyway it is a big, big disaster. In the morning the bike was not so bad like yesterday (Saturday) and I can stay in the 40.5 and 40.7 pace and ride very smooth but in the afternoon the rear tyre slides very much and I don’t have any chance. Each time I try to go faster I just spin more and I go slower. It is a difficult situation but we don’t have to give up.”
Rossi has vowed to keep giving his best to improve Ducati’s current situation and he will miss a post race test after this weekend’s Brno race to take part in a private session at Misano.
He said: “Now the next two weeks will be important for the rest of the season because in Brno I expect to go better. This is a more normal track and with the Ducati last year I did not such a bad race. I’m happy that it is straight away and we hope to make a better result. And after we have the test in Misano where we have some new stuff that I can use also for the rest of the season, so I hope to find something good to be a bit more faster in the last races.”
For nine pages of coverage from the Indianapolis Grand Prix, see the August 22 issue of MCN.