Jerez MotoGP: Dani Pedrosa plays down victory hopes

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Dani Pedrosa snatched a shock pole position for his home race in Jerez today and then quickly played down his hopes of winning the Spanish MotoGP race. 

Pedrosa cast aside his early season woes to claim his 32nd career pole position with a brilliant lap of 1.39.202 that kept bitter Spanish rival Jorge Lorenzo from seizing his third successive Jerez MotoGP pole.

But the Repsol Honda rider denied he was in a strong position to challenge for glory in tomorrow’s 27-lap race, insisting a new stiffer chassis had barely helped cure some of the chronic handling issues that have beset Pedrosa throughout 2010.

Even Pedrosa was shocked to snatch pole position but whether he can better his disappointing seventh place in the season’s opening race in Qatar remains to be seen.

He said: “I really didn’t expect this pole to be honest, but I was pushing very hard so I’m very pleased about it. Actually though, it’s not so significant for me because the important thing is the performance in the race and we still need to work very hard on this area.

“The new frame is delivering some improvements but we’re still not all the way there and we must continue to work on the stability because this is very important in order to be competitive over race distance. The bike is pretty the same as in Qatar because it moves on the straight and in the corners.

“On change of direction the chassis is a little bit better but on stability we still have to work a lot because the bike is moving too much.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt