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Valentino Rossi ended Friday’s practice at the Italian GP in sixth after struggling in the final sector at Mugello.
The nine-time World Champion had been looking forward to entertaining his home fans so much that not even the rainy weather conditions could stop him in the morning. He cleverly used the 45 minutes of FP1 to do eight practice starts from pit lane to allow him to try out some different clutch settings. However, as he immediately returned to the pits after each attempt, he did not set a time for the morning classification.
In the afternoon, with a dry track 'The Doctor' was able to start working on his bike setup. He focused on improving the balance of the bike to suit the last sector of the demanding Mugello circuit, an area where he admits he was struggling. He set a best time of 1'48.340 and ended the day in sixth place, 0.644s from the front.
Rossi will return to the track on Saturday morning for FP3 at 09:55 Local Time, with Qualifying due to start at 14:10 Local Time.
Valentino Rossi: “It‘s always difficult here. Mugello is one of the best tracks but it‘s very demanding and scary, you have to be very courageous because it‘s very fast. It has a great layout but it‘s difficult to find the right setting. Unfortunately, we lost time this morning due to the weather and we are not OK with the balance of the bike, but for the first practice it was not so bad. The problem is that we are all very close so we have to improve, because especially in the last sector I‘m not fast enough. This morning we didn‘t want to waste time and we had the chance to practice our starts, because this year we have some more problems with the clutch at the starts and we tried some different stuff, so at the end it was an important test.”
1 year ago