American Colin Edwards was disappointed to have only qualified in ninth place for tomorrow’s Misano MotoGP race after he struggled with rear grip on the left side of his Michelin tyre.
The 33-year-old Texan clocked a best time of 1.34.768 but he was 0.850s behind Casey Stoner on his way to his fourth successive pole position.
The Fiat Yamaha rider, who will race an experimental front tyre he first tried at a two-day test session in Brno last month, told MCN: “I can’t believe I rode my ass off like that for ninth. We made a change with the front and gone in a different direction to get some more surface area on the ground. I’m pretty happy with it and the rear isn’t too bad. We only have three or four left-hand corners round here but I can’t find any grip that will hold on the left-hand corners. I’ve tried all the tyres and I’m losing so much time on the lefts. All the left-handers here you accelerate onto a straight. It seems to be suffering a bit but the right feels great “
Edwards said he was also still struggling with a lack of top speed and acceleration on his factory YZR-M1. Team-mate Valentino Rossi is preparing to gamble on running Yamaha’s new pneumatic valve engine in tomorrow’s 28-lap race, but as yet Edwards has been no indication when he might get the chance to run the new spec four-cylinder motor.
“I’m down on acceleration. I try to follow anybody and they pull four or five bike lengths on me on the straight, “said Edwards, who said returning to Misano for the first time since 2002 hadn’t been the bad experience he was anticipating.
The track is now run in reverse and the double World Superbike champion said he feared the worst before arriving in San Marino.
“I never really liked it when I was in World Superbikes when it was the other way round. Compared to what it looked like when the World Superbike guys were here, it doesn’t feel as rough as it looked. I remember watching World Superbikes and it looked like a shit hole out there and bumpy as hell, There’s still some bumps but it’s the same for everybody and where they re-paved it is fine, “added Edwards.