Jorge Lorenzo missed out on a front row start for tomorrow's Malaysian Grand Prix but the Spaniard was keen to put a positive spin on his day at Sepang. Having crashed in FP4 Lorenzo said that a change made to the braking configuration of his Yamaha was the culprit. The team had used a brake cover to help cool the brakes and having suffered from a lack of confidence under braking throughout qualifying Lorenzo felt that the new part was the problem.
Following the crash Lorenzo admitted that he was somewhat tentative under braking for qualifying saying, "It's only natural after a crash that you lose some confidence and that can cost you a little bit in each corner and a couple of tenths over a lap."
When pressed about the brake issue Lorenzo said:
"The problem with the braking meant that the bike today was very different to yesterday and this morning. Sometimes that happens though and now we'll try and find a solution for tomorrow. We put some covers on the front brake for FP4 and I had some problems with the braking in FP4. We didn't think that the covers were the problem so we kept them for FP4 and in the two laps I had this problem in the last sector.
"After you have a problem like this [that caused his crash] it's natural that start to ride a little bit more nervously and you don't push as hard. To be honest the bike today wasn't very good in FP4 or qualifying, we don't understand yet what caused it but the problem with the braking was costing me a lot. You don't ride the same and you lose time in every corner because you lose some confidence."
Even though Lorenzo was edged off the front row by his title rival, and Yamaha teammate, Valentino Rossi he felt confident that he would be able to overcome any drawbacks during the race. Having set the pace in the morning session he felt that was a better indication of what to expect from him and that he could fight with the Honda riders.
"I think in the morning I had a slightly better pace but Marc was close. Dani was so-so in the morning but with the hotter temperatures in the afternoon yesterday and today he was very strong. Dani will be strong and so will Marc. I believe that I can be with them tomorrow in the race because it's a long race and maybe they won't have the same explosively in the race as they have on the fresh tyre in qualifying."
Tellingly Lorenzo refused to name Rossi as a potential threat in the race. When asked about the importance of winning the race tomorrow the double MotoGP champion dismissed that he needed to win the penultimate race of the year and instead said, "I don't have to win this race, we just need to finish in front of Valentino. Obviously if we can win the race or finish second it would be better, we don't have anything to lose so we'll see what happens."