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Elías tries to take positives from frustrating race

Elías tries to take positives from frustrating race

Finishing ninth in front of the Spanish fans at round three left Toni Elías disappointed but searching for positives from the Jerez weekend.

The Gran Premio de España ultimately ended in disappointment for Spaniard Toni Elías in front of the 120,000 Spanish crowd at Jerez, as he brought his San Carlo Honda Gresini machine home in ninth place.

Elias had been confident of a much higher position after qualifying ninth on the grid, but with track temperatures higher than they had been all weekend in Sunday afternoon’s searing sunshine, the Barcelona rider experienced rear traction problems during the 27 lap contest and he finished more than 40 seconds behind racewinner Valentino Rossi.

“I honestly thought we were capable of a better race but it was impossible,” Elías said afterwards. “We were suffering too much throughout the race with a lack of rear grip and I can promise the fans that I couldn’t do any more than I did.”

He continued, “In a situation like this you can only try to take some positives away from the Grand Prix as a whole and looking back at the weekend we have at least continued to make progress. We were two seconds off the pace in Qatar, one and a half seconds off in Motegi and one second off here. The target for Le Mans is to reduce it to less than a second.”

Having seen Elías struggle and his team-mate Alex De Angelis come home in 14th - as he fought a bout of flu - team manager Fausto Gresini was in no mood to hand out sympathy to his two riders, fuming, “I am so disappointed and angry right now that I can’t bring myself to comment on the race. I think the best thing for us is to put it behind us and look forward. Hopefully things will be better at Le Mans. They can’t be much worse!”

MotoGP, 2009, GRAN PREMIO DE ESPAÑA, Toni Elias, San Carlo Honda Gresini

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