Dovizioso battles through pain to front row

dovizioso review mugello qualifying
Saturday, 1 June 2013

Andrea Dovizioso was thrilled to have earned a second consecutive front row position in Italy on Saturday, this time doing so in both his and Ducati Team’s home nation.

On this occasion, the 27-year-old was fighting against a neck issue caused by a crash on Friday, leaving the rider in pain when needing to tilt his head back on straight sections of track at Mugello.

“The front row for us - at Mugello with the Ducati,” he smiled during an interview with motogp.com. “That is really important for all of the fans and all of the sponsors. Our target is to fight for the podium but our pace isn’t podium pace at the moment. I hope tomorrow will be colder because our bike will work better. For now, we’re on the front row and it’s good, so we’ll see what happens in the race.”

Dovizioso also shared his version of an incident with pole-sitter Dani Pedrosa, who - before setting the fastest ever MotoGP lap of Mugello - could be seen waving an arm at the Ducati rider, who he claimed was following him too closely:

“I have a good relationship with Dani, so I have no problem speaking with him. He complained because too many riders delayed him, but I can understand him because he was fast and wanted a clear track to try and do the best…but when you haven’t disrupted his fast lap, he can’t say anything.

“In the safety commission, we have spoken a lot about riders being in the middle of the track when someone else is pushing – that is really bad and really dangerous – but that didn’t happen today. I was really clean and clear with him and off the line; it was bad for him because he wanted a clear track, but we are (all) on the track and trying to follow a faster rider to be on the front row.”

Dovizioso’s front row result is his ninth since stepping up to the top tier of MotoGP in 2008. Eight of those nine results have been third place finishes, with the other a pole at Motegi in 2010.

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