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Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) called upon all his expertise to assess the grim condition of the TT Circuit Assen on Sunday. While Free Practice 3 was held in more or less dry conditions, Free Practice 4 was the opposite as the rain came down. Rossi was immediately comfortable in the wet, ending the session second just behind Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team). Knowledge of the wet would come in very handy for Q2, the track starting wet and drying as the session went on.
As has become a habit of his, Rossi waited for other riders to head out before venturing out himself. With clear space in hand, Rossi performed an exploratory lap before beginning to push and provisionally moving into third. The track continued to dry and forced Rossi back into the pits, his rear beginning to overheat. ‘The Doctor’ opted to fit a second full wet rear, conditions still too wet for intermediates. His decision proved to be the correct one as he improved his time to a 1’45.961 to take second on the grid.
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Rossi: "I made the right choice"
Valentino Rossi: “I stopped at the pit box four minutes before the end of the session, because my rear tyre was already getting too hot, because there were some places of the track that were starting to dry. For me it was too early to change to the intermediate tyre because three or four corners were still completely wet, so we put in another rain tyre and it was the right choice. It’s a shame for me that I’m not in pole position, but above all I’m happy for the second place and starting from the first line tomorrow.”
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