De Puniet just misses first row, Capirossi on row four

Saturday, 5 November 2011

The starting grid for the Gran Premio Gernerali de la Comunitat Valenciana was finalized in this afternoon’s qualifying session, in cold and windy conditions.

Randy de Puniet finished the session with the fourth-best time, just missing the front row by 0.061s after a strong performance all weekend. The French rider stopped the clock with a time of 1’33.118 behind third position qualifyer Ben Spies. Loris Capirossi registered the twelfth-best time with a 1’34.671, and will start the race tomorrow, the last of his career, with a special helmet and leathers designed for the occasion.

Marco Rigamonti - Randy De Puniet Track Engineer:
"We are very proud about our work. We were fast all weekend, both in the dry and in the wet. For the moment, everything went perfectly, both with the bike and the tires. The race pace is very good, and Randy will have to focus on the start. It’s a shame, we could qualified on the first row, but the important thing is that we were very close. Randy crashed on the last lap because he wanted to take the first row, but that’s okay."

Randy De Puniet:
I'm happy to end the season, at times unfortunate, so well. In these days my team worked so well. I found an excellent feeling with the bike and tires. I feel confident in both the wet and the dry. It’s been an up-and-down season, and I want to finish it as well as possible, as a way to thank the team.

Loris Capirossi:
“To think that this was my last qualifying session makes me a little sad, but I’m happy with the choice I made. I expected my last round to be different, happier. Instead, I’m very sad, and I have a big empty spot for Marco, who has left us. I’m sorry I wasn’t so fast, but I want to honor him as well as I can tomorrow. It will be my last race, and I still can’t believe it.”

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