Why is Cal Crutchlow struggling so much?

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No grip, no lean angle, no confidence. That about sums up Crutchlow’s Ducati experience so far.

“I’ve been scared to ride the bike because I have no idea what it is going to do from corner to corner,” he told MCN. “I’m having the same problems I’ve had for the whole season and no different to what they complained about last year. I’ve never ridden a bike so hard and got such poor results. I believe that if we can alter my bike to the way that I want it, we will be able to get the results. The bike clearly now doesn’t suit my style. There is no short fix for this. For all the guys in their first year at Ducati there was never a quick fix. They were never 15th in one race and on the podium at the next.”

Lean angle
“We have no idea why, but Dovi and Iannone have five degrees more lean angle than me in every corner. I’m at the limit with five degrees less angle and if I lean more I’m on the floor. We can’t explain it. Last year I was one degree less than Lorenzo and one degree more than Vale in most corners. I’m riding on eggshells compared to the other Ducati riders with much  less lean angle. So my lap time is one second slower even though I’m more on the limit.”

“We have too much understeer and I can’t ride the bike how I want. It doesn’t matter how you alter the line or if you do the same line as the other Ducatis. We still have more understeer and as the race goes on and the tyre wears, it gets worse.”

“I am frozen on the bike. I need to be able to relax and not freeze every time because I don’t know what the hell it is going to do. Once I get confidence to make the bike move and do what I want it to do, I’ll be more competitive.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt